We were a bit flummoxed when we got this e-mail:
I am an attorney and I just recently bought a super cute camisole from JCrew to go with a new light summer suit. The problem is, I don’t know what to wear underneath it because it is a little sheer. I assume I will be wearing my suit jacket over the camisole the whole time, but I’m still a little nervous about just wearing it plain. I was looking at nude colored shaping camisoles, but I am really clueless when it comes to that stuff. Any ideas?
OK. Let’s assume the reader bought a darker color of the camisole, and not a flesh-colored one, and is still having second thoughts about how to wear it by itself.
Here’s our $.02: There are many things this camisole is great for. Layering beneath a v-neck cardigan. Layering beneath a dress that is a little too low-cut. Layering beneath a — well, anything. It’s a nice fabric that will feel nice against your skin.
We would even say that this camisole is great for a blazer that you’re going to keep buttoned up (although, lazy as we are, we prefer to wear a t-shirt beneath a blazer like that because anything with sleeves will help you keep it clean and odor-free between drycleanings).
However — we have a problem envisioning a way to wear this as a blouse that wouldn’t make people in the hallway think, “Wait, did she forget to put on a top today?”
Here are some general problems that we see with this that we would avoid, in general, for office wear:
- Spaghetti straps
- A back that is so low-cut it’s unclear if your bra will be peeking out of the top of it (let’s assume that the front is, or can be adjusted to be, high-cut enough)
On a summer day, without concern for the spaghetti straps, we might advise you to buy a second, identical camisole from J.Crew and wear it under the first to make it more opaque without adding too many competing straps. But for work? We think this piece works best as a layering piece for the office. But: that’s just our $.02. Readers, what do you say?
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Instead, these are some of our favorite sleeveless tops to wear to work:
These are some of our favorite camisoles (note how basic they are!)
And these are some of the best t-shirts for layering at the office: