7 Business Outfits That Show You're Serious About Style

Go beyond the skirt or pantsuit.



Business attire can easily skew snoozy—there are only so many skirt sets and pantsuits a person can wear without fatiguing. Sure, tailored sets have come a long way to include cool oversized blazers, slouchy trousers, and modern skirts. But when you want to mix things up or, even better, level up your look, there are plenty of creative combinations you can try while still looking the polished part. 

When reworking your approach to trousers, button-downs, and blazers, versions crafted from leather instantly feel fresher, not to mention bold. Alternatively, you can pair timeless cotton or wool versions with modern heroes like longline shorts and asymmetric skirts. For dress codes with a little more leeway (i.e., suits not required), fashion-forward pieces like a boldly printed shirt dress or puff-sleeve blouse make a confident statement, all while exuding sophistication. Then, there are those pieces you likely reach for off duty but haven’t considered in an office environment—think a utilitarian-inspired jumpsuit, or a trendy sweater vest you’ve been sporting as a top but can easily layer with smart staples. 

For a visual and more detailed explanation of unstuffy business outfits, keep scrolling for seven outfit ideas comprising modern pieces.

A Blazer, Long Tailored Shorts, a Bodysuit, and Loafers

Pants are far from your only option when it comes to a blazer look. Instead, try long leather shorts for a modern statement. A bodysuit and loafers provide a sleek finish.

A Sweater Vest, a Plaid Skirt, a Turtleneck, and Pumps

That sweater vest you’ve been loving with cutoffs? It makes a great centerpiece to a business outfit when layered over a thin turtleneck and paired with a checkered wool skirt and pumps for fall.

Leather Pants, a Button-Down, Mules, and a Watch

Right now, it’s all about leather trousers with sporty influences like drawstring waists. Give a pair the business treatment with a crisp white button-down, angular mules, and a two-tone watch in tandem.

A Bold Blouse, a Pleated Skirt, Kitten Heels, and a Tote

Puff sleeves are not just for play: A voluminous blouse paired with a pleated skirt is a total power move for any formal office or client meeting.

A Bold Shirt Dress, a Belt, Tall Boots, and Earrings

The shirt dress gets a new life in a splashy print. Build yours into a refined business outfit by mixing in a thick leather belt, sleek knee-high boots, and chainlink earrings for a glimmering finish.

Trousers, a Leather Shirt, Slingbacks, and a Bag

A monochromatic outfit in a rich hue instantly sets a stylish tone. For a business-appropriate look, start with a classic pair of trousers you likely already own, then dial things up with a tonal leather top and shoulder bag, finishing with a neutral shoe for a chic contrast.

A Jumpsuit, Ankle Boots, a Carryall, and Hoops

The jumpsuit is an off-duty favorite, but you can easily transform a well-tailored style into a business outfit with sleek ankle boots, a modern tote, and hoop earrings as part of the equation.

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