In my personal life edgy, comfortable, and flattering drive my style. That's true in my business too. But very little of my time is personal, and my business, currently, requires more behind the scenes time than anything. So I have to tweak my wardrobe for the 85% of my life governed by other's perception of appropriate.
I work for an amazing organization that reluctantly accepts some of my individuality. The tattoos and piercings are a lot much, but over looked. I can't afford to push it too much further. So, I defined business causal for me.
Now I am addicted to cotton solids, patterned tunics, flirty dresses, boot cut pants in general, and a jacket with personality. I also love a great t-shirt. So what's my business casual exactly? It's literally changing out part of the suit. If you would wear a suit and a button up shirt, lose the jacket and button front shirt and go for that patterned tunic instead. You could even keep the top half and slip into a pair of khaki pants, if khakis are your thing. AND if you didn't know, you can lose the pantyhose, forever and always! BUT, no thong sandals no matter how cute. Denim only if pre-approved, and this includes the jackets. However, denim is almost always an absolute NO!
Now I push these rules, but never too much. I'm already on the edge. Today, for example, I'm wearing a beige cotton t-shirt with butterflies and flowers, not typically my thing, brown boot cut trousers, a purple scarf, and bronze metallic flats. I agree I'm on the cusp of inappropriate even though my t-shirt is super feminine it's still a t-shirt. But my office is business causal forgiving and here it's totally appropriate.
So I'm dating again, this is a big deal. I have a cute, athletic, prospect who's often in jeans or cargo pants and a polo type shirt. He thinks I'm FINE in whatever, but I want him to appreciate the ultra feminine side of me too. So even though I dress to impress with numerous flirty blouses, flattering boot cut jeans, and amazing wedges, I still throw around some beautiful dresses and fabulous heels to keep it all interesting. And my jewels, do you really have to ask? They are absolute perfection, of course!
I mean date night is the time to let your entire personality out. Chance it even, with over the top accessories and make up, and exciting fashion pieces. Just remember comfort, confidence, and CLASS! Make sure pushing the envelope doesn't push it over.
First the gym probably isn't in your home. So, dress like you're in public. Lycra and Spandex may be goal not yet obtained, and old and tattered don't equal gym clothes. Most of us pay a small fortune a month to workout at our neighborhood gym. Fashionably speaking, respect that! You don't have to wear a matching track suit, but clean and neat are essential.
I wear yoga pants, a slightly, emphasis on slightly, larger t-shirt than I hang out in, and a really amazing pair of New Balance sneakers. I feel comfortable. Still, there's another t-shirt on standby if I have anything to do afterwards, or a jacket if necessary. I also believe in being prepared.
Think wisely. When you are in a place of service be respectful. Don't lose yourself in clothes so conservative you aren't comfortable, but remember where you are! God doesn't care how fashionably creative you were that Sunday. He's focused on your heart, your love, your respect for Him, and your admiration. Remember that!
Remember to be your normal glam to death self lunching with friends, shopping, dinner with your man, running errands, etc. But when appropriateness is make or break, because it almost always is, make it!