Chances are that whether or not you are in the business work (or aspire to be), you will be presented with the opportunity to wear business casual work outfits. However, business casual in the fall is much different than business casual in the summer! Who would have thought! Let's get down to the basics to start.
What is Business Casual?
Have you ever been looked at the attire for an event the dress code is business casual? You probably thought to yourself, what exactly is business casual? Fear not, we’ve all been there, and we are here to show you some cute ways to incorporate it into your wardrobe. Whether you have a big interview coming up and you need interview outfit ideas, or just want to add some stylish pieces to your work wardrobe, every woman should own a few staple business casual pieces in their closet. Although business casual can mean a number of things to different people, there are some ground rules that everyone can follow. You also need to make sure that you’re following these guidelines carefully because there’s so much riding on your choices. However, before we even start thinking about what to wear for a business casual event, we need to start by understanding what it is.
Plus size business casual attire is less formal than traditional business clothing but still nice enough to wear into an office. You want to look like you can command (not demand) an audience. It is somewhere between black tie and yoga pants, but where? So what are we aiming for? The objective is to appear groomed, confident, and put together.
Business Casual for Plus Sized Women
Business casual is difficult to understand even in the most common sizes offered, but adding the task of finding great plus size clothing on top of that makes it even more of a difficult task. Sorting through the racks of department stores looking for outfits ideas for women to wear to work can be challenging and even discouraging at times. So what is our advice to you? Shopping from a company that specializes in making clothing for plus size women! These companies often know how to tailor clothing to curvy women so that they don’t need to be altered as much after purchase.
One of the main rules of wearing business casual women’s clothing this fall is feeling confident in your outfit. It is not new that confidence makes you appear more powerful, so put on an outfit every morning makes you feel like a boss! So let's find some pieces that you can wear interchangeably throughout the week or throw together based on need. Let’s explore some options.
Hurray, Summer is over! Which means we can begin to feel comfortable in outerwear again! Outerwear is not just an accessory, but a sole piece because it provides the structure the shape to complete your outfit. Because the weather gets a bit more chilly during the fall, you’ll need to choose your outwear based on if the event is inside or outside. Heavier jackets or blazers are great if you’re expecting to be chilly, but thin blazers and cardigans are perfect for warmer days.
Blazers are the creme de la creme of business casual wear because they can make just about any outfit appear much more formal. Blazers are also incredibly versatile so you can pair them with your favorite dress or rock them with some jeans. You can use blazers to create the illusion that your torso is much longer and learner by finding one that hits you just at the hip or add a pop of color to your wardrobe by finding one in a fun fall color!
If you don’t think that your occasion needs a blazer, then cardigans are another great option, especially in the fall! They’re ultra comfortable and worn just about all day long, yet still make you appear professional. Cardigans also come in various shapes, sizes, and warmth! We know that not all regions get chilly in the fall time, so in this case, pick up a cardigan that is lighter! On the other hand, gals that live in colder areas might want to opt for a longline duster cardigan to compliment their warmer outfit.
Every woman needs a dress when putting together their business casual wear wardrobe. Because it’s fall, you’ll want to get some new fabrics and colors into your business casual wardrobe. During the fall, it is also a lot easier to wear dresses that are work appropriate because you won't have to worry as much about overheating or being bombarded with the many mini-dresses that hit the market during summer. For starters, make sure to choose a dress that is at least knee length and avoiding any cleavage or bra straps. This is just a ground rule and a great way to make sure that you look feminine but professional. So what style of dress are we looking for this fall?
That wrap dress is your new best friend this fall. This dress is great for just about any woman with a curvy figure. If you do not naturally have an hourglass figure, you’re about to. The “wrap” portion of the dress comes in to play in your midsection making your waist appear as tiny as ever. However, you need to be careful with this dress style if you have a larger chest because it can sometimes appear too plunging. Try adding a cardigan over this one to make it more professional.
Shift dresses are oh so perfect for business casual fall work outfits, as long as they’re long enough of course! Style Tip: Add a dress extender under your favorite dress to take it from play time to work time! The reason that these dresses are so perfect for business casual events this fall is that they can be worn with cute booties, a scarf, and even a fun cardigan.
The A-line dress brings things up a notch. This dress is definitely a little bit more on the fancy side, but it is always better to be overdressed than underdressed. The dress is more fitted towards the top and midsection and then lays gently along the hip and leg. If you want to wear an A-line professional dress, it should be made of a sturdier fabric and avoid anything too flowy that might catch the wind. Either choose one that has capped sleeves or add a fitted jacket to make this style more professional.
Fit and Flare
The fit and flare dress is a great fit for curvy women who have larger hips that appear disproportionate to the rest of their body. Fit and flare dresses balance the figure out by drawing the eye to the top half of the body and then flowing away from the bottom half. Aside from that, it is one of the most comfortable dress types and can be worn all day. The fit and flare dress is perfect for the months of fall because it is usually made out of a much sturdier fabric which means that you will be kept warm all day.
When you look into an outfit for a business casual event, you’ll probably come across business casual fall outfits that feature go-to tops first. Because a top is often the focal point of your outfit, it can either make or break an outfit. There are some basic do’s and don’ts. For starters, your top should be cute but conservative! Try not to wear anything too low cut or anything that shows off your midriff. During most occasions, keep in mind that very thin straps are also inappropriate unless you are wearing a cardigan or blazer over the top. The rest of your outfit will be relatively straightforward so take this opportunity to add a little sparkle or flare to your outfit. A lightweight blouse always adds a girly touch if you pair them with a comfy cardigan. If you’re not into blouses, you can also throw on a nice ¾ length tunic with a scarf if you want to showcase a fun fall twist.
With so many options to choose from, a rule to live by is to feel comfortable in your top. As long as it is practical and fits nicely, then go for it!
You are going to need a few stable bottom pieces in your closet this fall! Aside from your favorite jeans, you’ll need some bottoms that are a little more fun and a little fancier!
There are so many options of pants available that are fitting for an interview or office day, but which will help you feel confident enough to command the conversation?
Sure you could attend a meeting in cigar pants or tight jeans, but have you heard about capris? Dressing up a pair of nicely fitting capris is a great trick to looking comfortably professional. Slip on a pair of capris and debut the same structure of plus size pants with the great blazer and you’re good to go! For fall, we're loving dark green, tan, cranberry, or even a dark blue capris.
Not into capris? Add some plus size jeggings to your wardrobe. Jeggings are a cross between leggings and jeans and are made to look like jeans, which essentially means that they are extremely soft, stretchy, and relaxed while looking oh so put together. The good thing is that jeggings can be dressed up just enough for business casual wear. Pair them with a nice cardigan and top, and no one will ever know just how comfortable you really are!
Flowy pants are perfect for business casual situations that fall a little more on the casual side and they’re a perfect way to show off your personality through your wardrobe! We’re loving some long flowy pants that have verticle stripes down the legs and feature some fall colors! These pants will not only keep you comfortable all day, but will make your legs appear much longer and leaner! Pair these with some booties or wedges and a slim fitting top and you’ll look oh so sophisticated.
The best part of fall is the obvious change in colors during the season! Just as you notice the Pumpkin Spice Latte come back in season, so does fall colors! During fall, it is important to avoid light pastel colors and swap them out for more earthy tones! Think tans, greens, purples, and browns.
Shoes are one of the best parts of every outfit. You might have a ton of shoes in your closet, but not all of them are appropriate for business casual events. Luckily, we have a ton of options. Check out these guidelines to pick the best shoes for your outfit!
The best heels to wear in a business casual situation are dainty and stylish. Try to find some pumps that aren’t too high so that your feet thank you instead of loath you at the end of the day. Another thing to consider this fall is dressing appropriately for the weather! You never know when the breeze is going to pick up or you’ll have to walk through a light rain. Consider choosing to put away the peep toes and picking up some close-toed heels. You’ll also want to consider practicality. For example, heels with platforms tend to be more comfortable even if you aren’t planning on walking around all day.
Espadrilles are so cute if your event is more on the smart casual side. They’re super comfortable and more stylish than your average sneaker. Wear these with a cute pair of jeggings, a nice top, and a fancy cardigan.