Are Scarves Professional Enough?

Are Scarves Professional Enough? | CorporetteAre scarves professional enough for conferences? Are there some ways of wearing a scarf that are more professional than other ways?  How, in general, do you dress for a male-dominated conference?  Reader A, writing from Europe (and a very male-dominated profession), wonders:

Maybe this is a cultural issue, but I’d never, ever, wear a scarf to a conference. Ever. At the office, sure, if there’s no meetings. At a conference, however, there is no more surefire way to be treated like a hostess/secretary/admin than wearing a scarf. The women who actually have those jobs are all colour-coordinated, but that doesn’t help. All people see is scarf or no scarf.  I think it’s a real shame, as I like scarves and the femininity they bring to an outfit. Instead, I’ve settled for statement jackets, or a skirt or shoes that “pop”.

Is this because I’m in a (very) male dominated business, or is it a Europe/US thing?

We’ve talked about how to wear scarves, as well as how to pack and what to wear to conferences before, of course, but this is a new one — and a very interesting one, given that scarves would never strike me as something a) unprofessional in general, b) hostess/secretary/admin.  When I worked at a very male-dominated law firm, one of the female partners I worked closely with — who certainly commanded respect from everyone — was known for her collection of Hermes scarves that she would wear long and loose beneath her blazers, a bit like the “drape scarf with bomber jacket” look above from Wendy’s Lookbook. (If you haven’t seen it, her scarf-tying tutorial is pretty awesome; the screenshot above is from the “companion” video. Another great resource generally: Une Femme d’un Certain Âge.) [Read more…]

Walk on the Wild Side with Prints

how to wear prints to work2014 Update: We still stand by this advice on how to wear prints to work — but you may also want to check our our more recent discussion on fun but professional patterns and colors

How do you start wearing prints — especially if you’ve no idea how to wear prints to work? Reader T wonders…

I’m wondering if you can do a post on incorporating prints into one’s wardrobe. I looked at my closet the other day and realized that about 90% of the clothes I wear are solid colors. I seem to always gravitate toward very saturated bold colors, but never to prints. I guess I sometimes feel that wearing prints looks loud” or will make me stand out too much at work. I know how to use prints with accessories (shoes, scarves) but I’d like to specifically see a post on buying clothes with prints.

We’ve shared our best tips for mixing textures and patterns, but we haven’t really talked about how to start buying prints.  I think T has a fear that is shared by a lot of women — looking too loud, too out of place.  So here are my suggestions for how to dip your toe into the waters of dressing with prints…

[Read more…]

Coffee Break – Pixel Scarf

Marc by Marc Jacobs - Pixel Glass Jersey Scarf (Neutral Grey Multi) - Accessories Zappos has some great Marc by Marc Joseph scarves on sale today, including this fun grey/black/white number. I like that it’s abstract but kind of striped, and I think it would be a great accessory for a lot of outfits. It was $58, now marked to $46.40 at Zappos. Marc by Marc Jacobs – Pixel Glass Jersey Scarf (Neutral Grey Multi) – Accessories

Readers, how often do you wear scarves in the summer? (Or at all?)


Coffee Break – Waves Cashmere and Silk-Blend Scarf

We Are Owls Waves cashmere and silk-blend scarfHmmn: I have never heard of the brand “We Are Owls” before today, but suddenly I am loving all of the scarves they have on the market right now. Case in point: this beautiful blue, teal, yellow, and white cashmere and silk blend scarf. I’d wear it with a blazer, long and loose, or looped loosely once around my neck in place of a statement necklace. It’s $180 at Net-a-Porter. We Are Owls Waves cashmere and silk-blend scarf


Coffee Break Jonathan Saunders Cashmere and silk-blend printed scarfI must say — I am unfamiliar with Jonathan Saunders in general, but I am loving what I’m seeing of him at The Outnet — the colors! the patterns! the rich fabrics! Loving this multi-colored cashmere and silk scarf in particular — and I love that it has a non-printed side, as well. Gorgeous! Was $490, now $245 at Jonathan Saunders Cashmere and silk-blend printed scarf


Coffee Break: Floating Feathers Scarf

Madewell floating feathers scarfI’m loving this wispy, artsy wool scarf from Madewell — love the colors and the abstract pattern. I’d use it for a pop of color and whimsy with a blazer of almost any color. Was $49, now $24.99 at Madewell. Floating Feathers Scarf


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