It’s happened to nearly every woman at some point in our adulthood or career. We make plans right after work for a fun evening out and need to glam it up a bit. Perhaps the plans are for your 10th wedding anniversary dinner at a posh restaurant, an elegant birthday celebration for a dear friend that includes late-night dancing at a club, or a cocktail reception for out-of-town clients you want to impress. Regardless of why you’re going out straight away after work, you know you’ll need to move from a professional look to a more fancy or festive look.
The catch is, you know you won’t have much time to completely change your outfit, you don’t want to drag an entire ensemble to work, or don’t have a comfortable place to make the full clothing change. Now what? How do you take the career woman look to the fun girl party look?
Let’s start by assuming that you decided to wear a simple black dress and coordinating flats to work. Perfect. You now have a blank canvas to work with.
Here are four quick and easy ways to transform your simple black day outfit to an evening ensemble:
During the day, wear low key, subtle jewelry. Use basic pieces that do not attract attention, but accentuate the dress, your face shape, or hairstyle.
At close of your workday, simply slip off the subtle pieces, tuck them into your purse, and add larger attention-grabbing jewelry. You can also add sparkle with faceted stones in an array of colors – everything from white to coral, black to teal. Earrings, rings, bracelets, or necklaces are all good options however, you could bring in a touch of bling with a scarf or belt. These little touches can really boost the overall effect with minimal effort. With a versatile black dress, anything goes!
Pro Tip: Wear your hair up or down at work, then switch it up before you head out to your event using a shiny or sparkly headband/hair clip.
As mentioned above, you started the day by wearing basic flats. Now it’s time to ‘kick’ it up!
Trade the flats for a pair of patent leather kitten-heel pumps. Shoes that have a shine or a touch of sparkle can really add the ‘wow’ factor.
You could also upgrade from the flats to sexy, strappy heels – show your toes – just make sure you’ve had a recent pedicure and leg wax!
Shoes are an easy way to elevate your look and are conveniently tossed in your car when you drive to your event.
Changing your purse will finish the outfit with zing. A clutch is a great choice. A small opera purse with a wrist loop will add a touch of elegance.
Pro Tip: Most women carry with them a plethora of contents – more if you’re working mother – so switching your handbag may take a little planning and organization. Downsize your usual gear and only take the necessities with you. For example, bring your identification, cash or debit card, car key, lipstick, and cell phone.
(Also, be careful to hide your usual handbag out of sight if you leave it in your car to prevent the temptation of thieves.)
So far, we’ve talked about ideas for things to put on to upgrade your daytime look, but this is one item you can take off. In the evening, show off your arms. It’s one of the simplest ways to dress yourself up. Leave the professional jacket in the car or hanging in your office. If you’re concerned about getting cold, bring a pashmina from home and bring that with you to your evening event.
As you can see, it doesn’t have to be complicated or difficult to spruce up your evening look. Accessories are the best way to do it and will make the switch quick and stunning, while allowing you to travel to and from work with little bulk or hassle.