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Please help me find some work clothes and shoes (desperate)

(19 Posts)
NorbertDentressangle Fri 09-Nov-12 13:27:18

Right, I need some clothes for a job.

Previous jobs have been less formal where I could have got away with smart jeans, denim skirts etc but I can't at this one so this 'work wardrobe' malarkey is all new to me.

Requirements include:

-flat shoes/boots (as a fair bit of walking involved as well as office-based)
-trousers probably better
-easy to mix and match/co-ordinate.
-layers maybe as office is warm but lots of going outdoors too
-easy-care (so no hand washing in fresh spring water and blow dried by fairies please)
-nothing outrageous wink

I don't want to go down the route of safe black trousers, safe white blouse and safe plain jumper with Mum boots (although the safe black trousers would be OK with a more exciting top and/or patterned scarf IYSWIM)

I'm mid 40s, 5'7", size 12 and tend to wear things like straight/skinny jeans with converse, skirts with Fly Mol boots, birkies, cardigans, striped jumpers, tunic tops etc.

I think footwear is my main concern as I don't really own 'shoes' (just boots, sandals, and Converse) - shoes always seem so frumpy and old-lady. Please tell me there are nice shoes out there!


suebfg Fri 09-Nov-12 13:42:19

I'd go for dresses for work - much more versatile and easy to accessorise with different cardigans and necklaces. I get most of mine from M&S

MrClaypole Fri 09-Nov-12 13:46:04

I've just got a load of nice work stuff from M&S Autograph collection. The dresses are lovely.

Just stay away from the Per Una section (vile clothes)

NorbertDentressangle Fri 09-Nov-12 13:47:38

Do they have non-stuffy ones IYSWIM?

I think the problem I'm having is getting my head round dressing smart without being stuffy and older-than-my years. Trouser suits and office-wear just isn't me.

When I went for my interview the DCs were shock at seeing me in clothes so different to the ones I would normally wear.

<Disclaimer -I'm not a complete slob, honest! Its just that I'm one of those people who (IMO anyway) never looks completely groomed or comfortable even when wearing smart clothes>

NorbertDentressangle Fri 09-Nov-12 13:49:55

MrClaypole -don't worry, I'm aware of the hideousness of Per Una.

Autograph Collection might be an option though as I actually have a couple of more casual items of theirs that I like and wear.

Charliefox Fri 09-Nov-12 15:56:33

You don't have to wear suits and conventionally smart clothes in an office job. I work in a global corporate org and yesterday I wore print capri trousers, a bit like theseé a back jumper and these shoes

NorbertDentressangle Fri 09-Nov-12 16:18:01

Thats it CharlieFox - I don't want conventionally smart or suits as they're not me. I need ideas, I need to know what sort of things I can go with.

I like the trousers on your link which I probably would wear on a daring day (wink) with a black jumper but shoes-wise I would have to go flat. I really, really never wear anything like the shoes on your link and would never be able to walk in them or wear them all day! Just not a heels person.

Charliefox Fri 09-Nov-12 16:26:58

I always think it's harder to wear flats and look work smart though. Could you try something like this I have these and they are so comfy and easy to walk in.

Charliefox Fri 09-Nov-12 16:33:53

Get ye on here for inspiration

lynniep Fri 09-Nov-12 16:38:41

My work 'uniform' consists of wallis dresses (calf length) and fly beam boots. I get my dresses off ebay. The boots cost loads but I love them because they look smart enough but are very comfy. Not quite as casual looking as mols.

NorbertDentressangle Fri 09-Nov-12 17:27:12

lynnie -I have the Fly Yule boots which are similar and they're my 'smart' boots. I'll check out Wallis as its not somewhere I usually go

Charlie - that site looks great for ideas. I'll take a proper look later.

Bigwuss Fri 09-Nov-12 17:41:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wellilikemythinking Fri 09-Nov-12 21:01:24

hmmyou sound like me and by that I mean in lots of ways!!!
I am your height, size although am 36 and desperate for work clothes, I only wear trousers due to my job. I have looked for donkeys for a decent pair of straight LONG trousers that are not granny material with a big crease down the front so will watch this thread with interest but can I ask what people wear on their feet - with view to weather getting cold shoes with them tight sock things look awful and I can't wear socks!
I tend to wear wide leg trousers and ankle boots (but shoes with my shorter trousers hence my sock problem!)with a shirt or short sleeve blouse and cardi.

NorbertDentressangle Fri 09-Nov-12 21:54:02

I know exactly what you mean about trousers in Granny material with a crease down them!

Where have you found any semi-decent ones?

Holymoly321 Fri 09-Nov-12 22:27:21

Op, I was like you, lived in jeans and converse. Then got an office job. Not sure how strict your office is, butbmy work wardrobe consists of lots of skirts, jumpers or slash neck tops, with tights and either snakeskin riding boots or I have about five diff pairs of brogues including fab pink suede pair. The tops are usually plain in colour, but the skirts can be gold, or patterned, or sequinned(!) and I usually add a brooch to break up the top. I still feel true to my individual style self, but am smart enough for an office with no need to go down that dreadful black trouser white shirt route (arrghh!). Good luck with it. I thought I'd hate not wearing my beloved jeans all the tine, but I actually love being able to express my style in diff ways now. Try and have some fun with it!

Holymoly321 Fri 09-Nov-12 22:30:03

Oh, and i found charity shops (in good areas) were a great way of picking up work stuff cheaply and for experimenting with styles.

girlgonemild Fri 09-Nov-12 22:41:46

I mix Gap basics and Zara.
Gap has 30% off until Sunday if you are signed up. I just got some great 7/8ths black trousers from there down from £30 full price. The length is v current but the colour is classic and officey. Perfect as a staple. I wear them with Topshop leather loafers and a Zara blazer and simple tops underneath. I'm in my 20's and pretty unstuffy but I think it's a look which works for all ages.
Also try Zara patterned trousers to mix things up (along the lines of the ones CharlieFox linked to).
These shoes might work?

wellilikemythinking Fri 09-Nov-12 23:10:36

My trousers are usually from next but I hate paying so much for work wear.
I do have a pump like shoe and courts but after some heeled loafers as think they cover more so can be bare foot but away from the elements as I am out and about a lot.

careergirl Sun 11-Nov-12 17:10:21

i must admit I find suits so easy - no worrying about what to wear!!! Suit, low heel as do a lot of scurrying about and need to be comfy and a t-shirt under suit as don't like shirts. Job done!!

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