#OOTD: Shake Up Your Business Casual Style For the Office

There are solid, reliable go-to’s that we all have when it comes to dressing for the office — right? Pieces like slim dark denim, a classic navy blazer and the like. But what to do when you want to switch things up just ever so slightly? That’s where today’s #OOTD is taking us. Dressing for the office can be a challenge, sometimes — it seems like every office, from creative agencies on up to accounting firms, are getting more and more casual. At least, that’s been my experience (let me know if you agree over on The Style Guide Facebook page). With that being said, looking great still pays off, and it’s still important — no matter how casual everyone else around you might be dressed. So, back to today’s #menswear ensemble. We’ve still got a stylish navy blazer in the mix, but we’re going a  step further with a casual printed shirt and stylish leather Chelsea boots. Everyone wins with this look, because we’re even incorporating … *gasp* … a tie! Yep, we’ve got it all covered. Read up below and let me know what you think via Twitter — cheers!

Can’t go wrong with some texture and unique style for late winter.

The Blazer: Grayers Hutton Moleskin Sportcoat, $165.98 — A stylish moleskin sportcoat is a unique change of pace from your standard cotton-blend navy blazer — the Hutton Moleskin Sportcoat from Grayers is a nicely tailored option.

The Shirt: Life/After/Denim Art Deco Shirt, $158 — While something like a classic Oxford shirt also works here, a unique printed shirt from Life/After/Denim adds nice visual interest and cool, casual style.

The Tie: Pocket Square Clothing Castillo Necktie, $56 — Ahh, yes … the dreaded necktie. Don’t wear a tie too often? A tweed tie from Pocket Square Clothing nods to the chilly temps some us might still be facing, and it also adds nice texture to this look.

The Chinos: Taylor Stitch Democratic Chino in British Khaki, $98Classic chinos from our pals at Taylor Stitch are an excellent change of pace from dark denim (which would also work nicely here, mind you).

The Chelsea Boots: Hudson Shoes Wynford Chelsea Boots, $210 — Because we might still be dealing with slippery roads out there, stylish Chelsea boots provide traction and sleek, office-ready style.

The Socks: American Trench Boot Socks in Light Denim, $29.50 — When is it worth it to spend nearly $30 on a pair of socks? When the socks in question are from American Trench & perfectly complement this outfit.
The Watch: BREDA Visser Watch, $90 — Leave the dive watch at home — this affordable, stylish leather watch from BREDA  is a perfect accessory for the office.
The Belt: Ezra Arthur No.1 Belt in Cognac, $100 — Even your belt should be sleek, minimal and dressy when it comes to biz casual style — the Ezra Arthur No.1 Belt hits the mark quite nicely.
 Did this #OOTD hit the mark in terms of shaking up how you’ll be dressing for the office? The building blocks — those crucial building blocks we always talk about — aren’t all that different from a typical office ensemble, yet the Hutton Moleskin Sportcoat from Grayers adds more texture and style that’s appropriate for the cold weather. A  cool, visually striking printed shirt from Life/After/Denim also switches things up from a typical office shirt. And in terms of your trousers, can you top classic chinos from Taylor Stitch? Nope, not quite. A cool tweed tie from  Pocket Square Clothing is a nice menswear move that ups the ante in terms of your ensemble, while the beautifully crafted (and affordable) Wynford Chelsea Boots from Hudson Shoes add sleek style on the footwear front. To keep it all in line, the Ezra Arthur No.1 Belt is an essential finishing touch, as is the BREDA Visser Watch. Last but not least, I can’t vouch enough for socks from American Trench — what more do you need to get ready for the office? Not a heck of a lot, truly. Let me know in the comments if this #OOTD does it for you!
Thanks for reading, as always.



#OOTD: Business Casual Fall Style

Editor’s note: You’ve surely seen this hashtag lots of different places, including on Instagram. But how does that carry over to real life? The #OOTD series will take one great item and put together a versatile, stylish outfit around it. Look for past features here.

So, we ran into a bit of a conundrum last week on The Style Guide when we talked about how to dress for a casual fall day. We’re nearly through November, and the weather’s been so up-and-down … how does one dress to meet those demands? And if you’ve got to switch from casual fall style to sharp fall style, just how do you do it? Particularly, how does one dress in business casual fall style? Maybe your office isn’t the type of place where a suit and tie is required (it seems few offices are nowadays) — heck, maybe it’s a place where a collared shirt isn’t needed all that often. But let’s say you want to up your game going into a prime cold-weather dressing season — or perhaps, you just need an excuse to refresh some business casual style staples. Now, we’ve talked about how to dress for a business casual office in the summer, but dressing for the fall is a bit different — for starters, you’ll be needing another layer or two depending on the weather. What other #OOTD tips do we have to share? Well my friends, you’ll just have to read on below. Oh, and if you’re scrambling for something to wear for Thanksgiving later this week? A few of the below pieces will come in just as handy for turkey time as they will for your next office meeting. Keep up with The Style Guide (AKA yours truly) on the daily via Twitter and Instagram, and leave any suggestions for this ensemble in the comments below. Deal? Deal.

Can you go wrong with a navy jacket & khaki five-pocket pants? Hardly.

Can you go wrong with a navy jacket & khaki five-pocket pants? Hardly.

The Jacket: Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket in Navy, $219.98 — Make no mistake, this jacket features a bit of a unique fabric blend, especially in chilly weather — textured wool & linen chambray aren’t exactly a regular fall combo. But for a four-season jacket with modern styling potential, it doesn’t get better.

The Topcoat: Old Navy Tweed Topcoat, $124.94 — If you were worried about staying warm on a chilly November or December day, don’t be. This Old Navy tweed topcoat is a heck of a bargain and features a nice fit.

The Shirt: Bonobos Jetsetter Dress Shirt in Solid Light Blue, $128 — With a range of customizable options — from the collar to your choice of pocket, plus a dialed-in Bonobos fit, this is a classic dress shirt — a tad pricey, but very solid. Note that we’re ditching the tie, but I’d say you should accessorize with a crisp textured pocket square.

The Pants: Flint and Tinder 365 Khaki Pant, $98 — OK, so you’ve got a sharp jacket and a stylish dress shirt covered … but your office is too casual to go with a full-on suit. Reach for a tailored pair of crisp five-pocket pants — versatile, slim-fitting and equally at home in spring or fall.

The Shoes: Johnston & Murphy Duvall Wingtips, $99.99 — While you could also go with a pair of classic leather chukka boots here, sharp wingtips are just as appropriate and lend a bit of polish to this ensemble.

The Socks: American Trench Merino and Cashmere Fair Isle Socks, $19.98 — Merino AND cashmere, you say? It’s a heck of a luxurious combo for socks, and these ones from American Trench should feel comfortable while fitting great.

The Watch: Armogan Spirit of St. Louis Chronograph, $194.98 –Watches from Armogan work particularly well for business casual situations, what with their crisp designs and slightly larger (and thus more casual) case sizings. Case in point — the Armogan Spirit of St. Louis Chronograph.

The Gloves: Hestra Edward Sheepskin Wool Lined Gloves, $125 (Available via East Dane) — Hey, we said it’d be cold, right? What better way to fight the chill in style than with a pair of rich brown leather gloves?
Beckett Simonon

So, if you still feel like you’re not ready to dress for fall in business casual style, I’d suggest you snap up one or more of the above picks. Particularly when it comes to a crisp, sharp jacket like the Taylor Stitch Telegraph Jacket,  you’re getting a piece that can work in multiple seasons with just a few extra layers. And that’s just as true with the ever-versatile Flint and Tinder 365 Khaki Pant — casual enough for a laidback office, and at home on a fall or spring weekend.  When you throw in accessories like beautiful merino-and-cashmere Fair Isle socks and a handsome chronograph watch, you’re looking at a complete fall outfit. Got questions? Send me an email or drop us a line in the comments — and let me know how it works for you!

Stay stylish,