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One of the trickiest thing about dressing for the summer, aside from making the decision to finally ditch the opaque tights, is how to dress for the workplace. Whether you're trying to keep your cool (literally) while slaving away at the office or behind a till, or for something in between, it can be hard to strike the fine balance between professionalism and practicality, while keeping your stamp of style.

These looks are all very adaptable. There are hundreds of rules across each field in the workplace, so obviously, pick and choose for inspiration at the workplace: some companies may frown against open toes, and others against nail colours, but these can easily work for everyday wear too!

daisybutter - UK Style and Fashion Blog: ways to wear, how to wear, SS12, topshop, zara, river island, essie cloud nine

Look One is quite Olivia Palermo inspired, as my biggest 'style icon', I adore the crisp clean lines, chic minimalist look and neutral tones. Swap your typical black trousers for cigarette trousers or ankle grazers, with a neutral pair of flats for something classicly chic and slightly Parisienne. I adore this heart cut-out top, in typical me style, you can easily cover up with a light knit cardigan if your workplace frowns against cut-outs, but this will look gorgeous with your newly tanned skin! Pair with the summer update of 'that' Zara shopper bag.

daisybutter - UK Style and Fashion Blog: ways to wear, how to wear, SS12, joy the store, topshop, zara mini shopper, maria allen jewellery

For a more casual workplace or perhaps at a fashion internship, Look Two is easy summer chic. Wear a pair of printed cigarette trousers with a striped Breton top for a subtle take on print clash while still keeping cool, and pop a pair of Marc Jacobs inspired sandals on to complete the look. Zara have recently released a mini version of their infamous shopper bag, which is perfect for a relaxed workplace. You could also add a watch to make sure you're on time, to make a great first impression at internships.

daisybutter - UK Style and Fashion Blog: ways to wear, how to wear, SS12, oasis scarf print, H&M, marc jacobs rose gold chronograph watch, le bunny bleu

I'm not sure how long their promotion is lasting for, but on my Internet boutique browse travels, I noticed that H&M are running a £2.99 offer on this skater skirt, much like the Zara one I frequently wear. If you're in the market for a skirt, grab one quick but beware of H&M's notoriously awful delivery service. For a summery feel, a black skirt (this one is knee-length!) is great for a professional and practical look. Wear with a printed silk tee that isn't revealing, with rose gold accessories and a simple pair of flats. Pop the watch and bangle on the same wrist to add interest to your arm candy.

What do you wear to work in the summer? Is your workplace strict on dress code? 

56 comments

  1. I love all the looks, but particularly the first.. the Zara shoppers are far too nice, as is the heart cut out shirt. I can wear what I like where I work although standard attire seems to be maxi dresses and sandals! xx

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    1. Thank you Rachel! Look One is probably my favourite as well, I adore sleek, clean cut outfits at the moment and seriously need the plait version of the Zara shopper bag :P xx

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  2. Oh my goodness, really loving look one-that shirt is just adorable!:)XX

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  3. The Zara shopper bags are so perfect, I really need to start saving up for one :) xx

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    1. Me too! Might get that little fund started now, haha! xx

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  4. The Heart Cutout is so adorable! But what caught my attention and doesn't want to let go are the Pink Bunny Motive flats! They are the cutest thing I've ever seen and I need them in my life, period.

    I think these really are work-appropriate outfits and I like #3 a lot! :) xx

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    1. Thank you Denny! The pink bunny flats are adorable, right? xx

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  5. I adore look one, I would so wear that...if I could. Will have to stick with my black polyester trousers for now. I'm going to sit in the freezer! xxx

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    1. Thanks Gem! Aw, sad times, it was so hot earlier in the week, if it were acceptable to walk around naked, I would've indulged in doing just that! :P xxxx

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  6. my favorite is look number 3. I have an internship coming up so I will definitely try these looks out. Really great inspiration!

    Jackie
    http://fashionxfairytale.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thanks Jackie! All the best with your internship (:

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  7. I love number one, the bag on number two is gorgeous. You put allot of effort into making these! Love these kinds of posts

    http://thefashiondistrictnlc.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. Thanks Nicola! Haha yup indeed, but it's what I adore doing - styling and writing fashion stories (: glad you enjoy them! xx

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  8. I just tried to buy the bargainous H&M skirt online and got rudely informed that the minimum order value is £6!! With that and the shocking customer service / awful delivery service, they really don't persuade you to buy online do they?

    Love the looks though! :) x

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    1. Aw really?! Surely they couldn't be rude online...? Ah well, it'd be a small sacrifice for a bargainous skirt and there's plenty online to make up the £3 difference haha (:

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  9. I love look one! Hope you're enjoying your internship xx

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    1. Thank you Erin ♥ really enjoying my internship so far, think I need to 'prove myself' a little bit though, as the other interns have already been there for a while and I feel completely overshadowed and a little left out by them :/ xx

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  10. Love the first look, nude blouse with the cut out hearts is gorgeous. The print on the trousers in the second look is lovely too :)

    ♥mollie from musicandmollie

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  11. I love the H&M Skater Skirt...been looking for one just like that! So disappointed it's sold out on the website, but not really surprised at that price!

    Love these great posts!

    xx

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    1. Aw really?! I haven't been back to look! H&M have similar ones in store for either £3.99 or £7.99 though, I remember picking one up last summer, hope that helps (:

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  12. You've hit the nail on the head.. I'm really struggling how to dress for work. It appears all my skirts are way too short without tights! But look two is lovely, and look three is definitely my favourite!
    Makes me miss my bunny shoes too!xx

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    1. Oh gosh, ME TOO. Massive problem, especially when commuting with tubes and all that jazz. I'm totes investing in pyjama-esque trousers next week (:

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  13. Thanks for this! I've been wondering what to wear this summer as I don't want to overheat behind a desk (that'd be embarrassing!), and these looks like very suitable options Hope your internship's going well so far xx

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    1. You're very welcome, Rebecca! All easily worn with a simple scarf if the air-con gets turned up as well (: internship is going okay so far thanks lovely! xx

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  14. Oh gosh Look Two is my absolute favourite! The Marc Jacobs-esque sandals are just gorgeous. This summer I'm working at a daycare so I'm afraid I'll be wearing clothes I can get jamprints on, but I might actually pick up a pair of those shoes for days off :) X

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    1. Aweee thank you Hannah ♥ oh I know the feeling (kind of), my baby cousin chewed away at my dress last weekend - not ideal! Hope you're well!

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  15. I'm so in love with that zara bag <3
    xoxo Anja

    http://stil-houette.blogspot.com/

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  16. Fab post my lovely! Love love love look one!
    x

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    1. Thanks Sarah! ♥ Think Look One is my favourite too, so Palermo ;)

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  17. Great tips for work wear :) #1 is my fave! I'm happy that they are not really strict about dress code at my work place. I can wear nail polish and even jeans :) but i actually do like dressing a bit more classy and chic for work as usually i tend to wear more casual outfits in my free time!
    Zara always has so pretty bags, not easy to resist ;)
    Hope your internship is going good!! How do you like it so far?
    XO♥

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    1. Aw thank you Claudia! I much prefer being a little more classy for work as well, it means you can have more fun with non-work clothes (: I'm enjoying my internship so far, I think I need to 'prove myself' a bit though, the other interns had already been there a while when I started and I just feel a bit overshadowed and like I'm not quite good enough... xx

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  18. Ahh amazing outfits once again lovely! I'm totally in love with outfit 1 especially, the heart cut out shirt is stunning! Xoxo

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    1. Thank you Jennie! ♥ wish Topshop quality was a little more akin to Zara though, then it'd be perfect! Hope you and little Ralphie are doing well (:

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  19. I love the zara bags, been wanting one of them for ages! the heart detail on the back of that shirt is amazing! ah marc jacobs watches, love

    http://amyelizabethmartin.blogspot.co.uk/

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    1. I think I might snap up the Zara shopper in Look One, so perfect! Thanks Amy (:

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  20. I love the topshop shirt! This is my first summer working in an office so I'm still struggling with my summer work wardrobe. They seem quite relaxed though so I think I'm getting the hang of it. Hope your internship is going well :) x

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    1. Thanks lovely! I'm struggling a little with mine too, haven't been shopping in forever and my clothes are all super old/not very me! xx

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  21. All the outfits are lovely especially the first one. I love it when you this type of posts! x

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    1. Aw thank you so much Nicolina! xx

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  22. I love all of these, the heart cut-out topshop blouse is so pretty! My workplace is very relaxed on what we wear, as it's at my university and students pretty much run it, however I always feel like I should wear clothes that are slightly more work-styled!

    Lou xx 
    Bits & Bobs

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    1. Thank you Louise! Aw that's lucky (: I'm at a fashion magazine so it's pretty open with what we wear, which makes it harder in a sense! Hope you're well! xx

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  23. Love them all, but can really picture myself wearing the first look and the second one, if I finally took the plunge and bought some floral trousers that is.

    -Elodie x
    http://www.elle-yeah.com

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    1. Yes, I can def see you in those two Looks as well! I'm going to finally buy some pyjama-esque trousers next week as a treat for surviving the first leg of my internship (:

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  24. I love this post Michelle. I can't wait to start shopping for a work wardrobe, scary but exciting! I love both the Zara bags you chose xx
    Ella @ Belle Vintage

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    1. Thank you Ella! I'm yet to even shop for mine and I started interning a week ago - whoops! Am def thinking of investing in a Zara shopper soon, they're so classic and practical (:

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  25. This is so helpful, I'm starting my work experience soon (ok, so it's not "work" work haha) but I've never been in a position to dress smartly like this. All 3 looks are lovely and great inspiration.
    Jessica x

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    1. You're welcome Jessica! Hope your internship goes well! xx

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  26. Oh Olivia Palermo's like my go-to-girl when it comes to trying to find a way to style work wear, she pulls off Upper East Side working girl chic so well (well her & Blair Waldorf). Fab post Misch! This will come in handy for placements/interviews/grad schemes etc I'm sure! xoxo

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    1. Blair Waldorf (fictional characters as inspiration, FTW!) and Olivia Palermo are my ultimate style icons! How I'd love to raid their wardrobes... thank you Ria, any luck on the placement hunt so far? xx

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  27. Great post! I love all the looks but especially the first one I could definately see me wearing. Want that Topsop cut-out shirt so bad <3

    Kirsty
    http://kirsty-elizabeth-loves.blogspot.co.uk/
    xx

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    1. Aw thank you Kirsty, glad you enjoyed! (:

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  28. Luckily my office isn't at all strict all dress code so I have been able to get away with bare legs and sleeveless blouses which can only be a good thing!

    Maria xxx

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    1. Aw that's lucky! Been so, so warm recently!

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