Summer has arrived in full force this week. Summer in the City is one of my favourite times of the year, but for those of us who work in a an office it throws up many a sartorial dilemma. Now, I love me some cut-off denim shorts and a vest in the comfort of my own garden, or on the beach, but in the office, even my office where there is no dress code at all, that look won’t cut it at your desk. Personally I don’t believe ANYONE should be wearing a flip-flop and a hot pant in the work place. Flip flops especially. They are for THE beach people! They are not designed to be worn on your commute, the flappiness, the high propensity to get one stuck in the escalator. The grime, the flimsiness, it’s just not on.
Other items that I also deem unacceptable for work are strappy mini-dresses with no bra — saw one culprit in one of those on Wednesday, she nearly had my eye out with her very freely swinging busoms. Playsuits, also not really right for high-powered business meetings, and on Tuesday I saw a lady in the canteen queue sporting boob tube…Live and let live I suppose, but too much flesh on show around the photocopier sets my teeth on edge. My general rule of thumb for dressing in the workplace, even on very hot day is ‘Would I feel comfortable in this if I was suddenly called into a meeting with the chairman?’ if the answer to this is ‘No, probably not’, then maybe rethink your outfit.
I reckon some lightweight cotton is your best bet, I’m not talking about those awful pastel linen pants with elasticated waists that are a favourite of many ladies-of-a-certain-age. We can do better than that. I also don’t like anything too short these days and due to my rather sad spur-of-the-moment-I’ll-have-one-on-each-arm-please 90’s tattoos I also favour some kind of sleeves, but I assume most you don’t have this issue, so let’s have a look at some choices for this hot weather at work.
THE COTTON SUMMER DRESS
This is my go-to summer work outfit. A lightweight cotton dress with Leather Sandals. I love this Monsoon one. It’s out of stock in my size or else I would have snapped it up, but I have it on good authority it will be back online soon, so keep an eye out if your size is also not available. It’s very similar to this Free People dress that I have ordered though, so I probably don’t NEED another one. But if this summer heatwave continues one IS going to need more options!
THE T‑SHIRT AND LOOSE TROUSERS
An easy breezy outfit that works for ‘at home’ or at work. Assuming you don’t work in the city or somewhere that frowns upon T‑shirts. The Wide Leg Trouser is your friend in the heat. Jeans are a no-go area as they are too thick and too hot. A cotton wide-leg will help to keep you cool.
THE COTTON TOP AND SKIRT
A good alternative to the dress and sandals is the skirt and cotton top. I know I’m banging on about cotton and linen, but in the heat you really should steer clear of man-made fibres. If you’ve ever stood next to a man wearing a Polyester Shirt on the Central line in the summer, you will have a good idea as to why…
THE EASY JUMPSUIT
Go for something reasonably loose and less fitted in the summer. These two from Whistles are perfect for this weather. Both made of cotton and nothing clingy. Jumpsuits are also great from impromptu ‘let’s have lunch in the park’ days. Much easier to sit cross legged with an egg and cress sandwich in a jumpsuit than in a skirt.
THE SMART SUMMER DRESS
Finally a slightly smarter version of the summer dress. I love the Lily and Lionel Dress. Great fit and great floral pattern. I have ordered this Cos Dress. As with a lot of things in Cos, they look like nothing on the hanger but drape really well when you try on. I nearly bought the dress at full price, but glad I waited as it’s now on sale. It’s a classic ‘Buffet Dress’, hides all sins as it’s nice an loose! I already have these & Other Stories Sandals from last year. Must be a classic if they’ve done them again this year.
1. Victoria Beckham Acetate Sunglasses (on sale)
2. Cos Layered V Neck Chiffon Dress (on sale)
3. Lily and Lionel Vintage Floral Dress (on sale)
4. & Other Stories Buckle Block Heel Sandals
5. & Other Stories Raw Edge Leather Sandals
This hot weather looks likes it’s set to continue for the foreseeable. How are you coping? Do you work in an office? What are you wearing? so many questions!