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Dressing for the office is a challenge in summer, in general and during the muggy, hot days of August in particular. Inside the AC creates a chilly environment, while outside, it is too humid to even sweat. Read how to create looks for work during the Dog Days.

Contents
  1. The Summer Work Outfit Dressing Challenge
  2. A Sleek Dress Is Instant Style for a Summer Work Meeting
  3. Don’t Forget the Jacket
  4. Accessories Keep Outfits Interesting
  5. Invest in Classic Sunglasses for Work Lunch Meetings
  6. Try an All White Summer Look
  7. Summer Work Meeting Outfit Suggestions
  8. Skip Ironing with Jerseys
  9. Wrapping Up Looks for Work during the Dog Days
  10. References

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The Summer Work Outfit Dressing Challenge

The heat of summer asks for light dresses to stay in style and look professional at work. The thing to tackle each hot summer day is how to stay cool on the commute to and from work and during lunch break, while on the other hand staying comfortable at work in the air conditioned office.

influencer in sun safe work lunch during the dog days look
Dog Days work lunch meeting outfit: Statement rutile quartz necklace, statement belt, Nordgreen watch, Hermes collier de chien bangle, Neo Tango Dalmatian print sandals (all own), cat eye sunglasses c/o SUNGAIT, top and bottom c/o Coolibar

 

stylist in Casual Friday skirt and Tee look during dog days
Outfit for hot summer day Casual Friday: Isaac Mizrahi cardigan, Longchamp bag, Very Fine Dance Sport Shoes sandals, Hermes collier de chien bangle, DIY bangle, watch, Ray Ban aviator sunglasses, Femme Luxe graphic Tee and skirt c/o Coolibar

 

business casual stripe dress with scarf for dog days
Outfit details for business casual style lunch work meeting: Longchamp bag, Matisse embroidered mules, Gucci suede enamel buckle belt, Valentino glasses, Hermes collier de chien bangle, silk print scarf

 

A Sleek Dress Is Instant Style for a Summer Work Meeting

Typically one associates meetings in summer more with BBQ, rehearsals, weddings, 4th of July, or family reunions. However, lives goes on also in summer. This means there are also work meetings. A skirt suit or pantsuit seem just too hot on the commute to work in the mid of the dog days of summer. A white sheath with abstract floral print is a great instant way to stay cool, and look professional in a meeting on a hot summer day.

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stylist in astract floral print white sheath dress
Elie Tahari abstract floral print sheath, MOSCHINO vintage belt, D&GM sunglasses, studded sling backs, and Celine bag

 

Accessories Keep Outfits Interesting

The floral print colors permit a variety of possibilities to change the look color wise. Just pick a different color to feature when you repeat the dress the next time for a work meeting. Compare the look above and below. I wear my floral sheath with a MOSCHINO belt, my red Celine bag and studded orange-peach sling back heels. In the look below, I went for an orange mini bag and a light pink leather jacket.

mature style woman in office outfit

fashion blogger over 50 in sheath
Outfit details: Abstract floral print Elie Tahari sleeveless summer sheath dress, vintage MOSCHINO belt, Hermes collier de chien bangle, unbranded studded red orange pumps, pink Newport News motorcycle jacket, and orange mini bag (all own)

 

See the interesting hemline and neckline of this dress. A necklace would be too much. However, an abstract brooch works. More on how to accessorize with brooches at the link.

 

Invest in Classic Sunglasses for Work Lunch Meetings

Since at this time a year, the Sun is up the entire work day, you should have a pair of sunglasses handy that matches the vibe of your work wardrobe. You may need them for the walk to a work lunch meeting or even during lunch when the group decided to sit outside. Squeezing your eyes never looks professional. When you have to spend a notable time outside you wear sun safe work attire.

 

fashion blogger over 50 in work outfit for a lunch meeting during the dog days
Lunch meeting with clients look: Gray summer skirt with silk top, DIY necklace, Ralph Lauren silver pumps, Paloma Picasso sunglasses and Celine bag (all own)

 

Don’t Forget a Jacket

This advice sounds counter-productive. However, when the heat is on, the air condition is on. This means it may be cold at the office when you come from outside. Thus, a jacket can help to avoid to catch a cold.

Stylist tip: Have a cardigan or denim jacket in a neutral color that works with most of your summer clothes in a drawer of your desk.

 

influencer in white print dress with white denim jacket fuchsia bag
Eli Tahari printed sheath dress with white denim jacket, Gloria Vanderbit red pumps, 3.1 Philip Lim tote, Hermes enamel bangles, Seiko watch, leopard statement necklace and Paloma Picasso sunglasses

 

In summer, I love to wear dresses. One can easily add a cardigan or even a shirt as cover-up in the chilly air conditioning at work.

mature woman in fit-and-flat dress look for work during the dog days

midlife blogger in floral summer dress styled for work on hot humid days

mature style blogger in abstract floral print fit-and-flare summer dress
T. Tahari scuba jacket as cover-up at the office, eShakti floral dress with Ray Ban sunglasses for a lunch work meeting. Jaeger Tote, DIY brooch, Michael Kors cork plateau patent leather sandals (all own) and wooden watch c/o Jord (all own)

 

Inside, a light sweater or a denim jacket can beat the chilly AC when the dress code is Business Casual Style.

 

stylist in work look for mature women
Elie Tahari abstract floral print sheath dress with short sleeve blazer, Paloma Picasso belt, D&GM sunglasses, statement bag, and Nicole suede sandals

 

midlife woman with work outfit
Side view of lace sheath work outfit

 

posh chic midlife woman in shape giving lace dress and sandals
Back view of fitted eShakti lace dress with Dooney and Brouke bag, Michael Kors sandals (all own), and sport wood watch c/o Jord

 

 

Try an All White Summer Look

What is the trick to make white on white work? It is the mix of structure and material. The embroidered tucked in tunic gives structure that is quite different from the leather skirt and fine knitted cardigan. More tips on how to style a monochromatic look at the link.

 

all white work outfit to stay comfortable in the AC inside during the dog days

over 50 years old woman in all white work outfit with red pumps to stay comfortable in the AC during the dog days
Outfit details: Mode International cardigan, Oliveo white leather skirt, Gloria VanderBilt pumps, LV bag, Hermes collier de chien cuff, pearl necklace, Ray Ban sunglasses, multiple string pearl necklace, LV Murakami saddle bag, and Indian embroidered blouse (all own)

 

The look above is also an example of how to incorporate an ethnic piece in a western outfit. The red pumps and multi-color printed white Louis Vuitton bag with studs add interest. In Europe, white wearing white seems to be considered too much work to keep the white crisp and white, and to stay clean, wrinkle free and unstained. Thus, a white blouse or bottom down shirt is as far as a European woman will go unless she is a bride. On the contrary, wearing white in summer is an American tradition.

 

Summer Work Meeting Outfit Suggestions

Here some visual inspirations for professional looks to wear at a work meeting in summer. The looks in the next photo works in a business casual environment.

stylist in military inspired dress for work
Nova military inspired dress with pumps, smoky quartz statement belt, Ray Ban sunglasses, and structured bag for work

 

influencer in white straight skirt, red pumps, light blue button-down shirt for the office

stilist in white knee-length skirt chambray shirt red pumps LV bucket bag sunglasses
Office look details: Oliveo white leather skirt, Oliveo chambray button-down shirt, multiple strings of pearls, Kieselstein Cord belt and buckle, LV bucket bag, red Gloria Vanderbilt pumps, and Ray Ban sunglasses (all own)

 

Skip Ironing With Jerseys

I am not a big fan of ironing in summer. It’s already hot, right? To be honest, I am not a fan of ironing at all. 😉 Thus, I have a lot of jersey knit type dresses that won’t wrinkle during the commute or in the laundry. The wrinkle-free Karina dresses are among my summer favorites for the office.

 

Stylist tip: When your work dress code requires legwear, wear knee highs or stockings under your midi dress to stay cool. Stockings have come a long way in recent years.

 

Wrapping Up Best Looks for Work during the Dog Days

If linen fails to meet your work dress code, go for non-iron dresses, or separates with a matching cardigan or sweater to fight the AC. Have sunglasses for work lunch.

Learn what to wear when in How to Dress for Success in Midlife. Buy the book now.

When you are new to the team, check whether the unofficial summer work dress code is more casual than the official work dress code. In other words, take notice whether your most stylish female colleagues go a bit more casual than usually. If so, follow suite.

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References

Mölders, Nicole (2019) Outdoor Universal Thermal Comfort Index Climatology for Alaska, Atmosphere and Climate Sciences, DOI: 10.4236/acs.2019.94036

Mölders, N., Kramm, G. (2014) Lectures in Meteorology, Springer, New York.

Photos: G. Kramm

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