The Dos and Don’ts of Wearing Prints at Work

The wrong prints can make your outfit look completely unprofessional. Avoid being the latest fashion ‘miss’ at work by following our dos and don’ts guide to wearing patterns at work.

Do Pair Patterns with Neutral Accessories. Wear simple, neutral, and minimalistic accessories. This eliminates the possibility of your outfit looking too costumey because of too many patterns and accessories.

Don’t Pick Bright Pastel Prints. Pastels create the perfect spring, easy-breezy look but that doesn’t work in a professional environment. It  might make your style look immature.

Do Pick a Classic Silhouette. Wear patterns on a classic pencil skirt, or pair a polka-dot blouse with a basic black pair of cigarette pants.

Don’t Wear Ruffles. Avoid extremely feminine details such as lace, bows, and ruffles.

Do Pick Dark Floral. Light floral creates a graceful, sweet look. Darker floral gives a more hard, professional look. Pick dark floral over light floral in a work atmosphere.

Don’t Wear too Many Prints. Creative work spaces allow for fashion to represent your art. However, more corporate spaces won’t appreciate employees overwhelming their eyes with print patterns everywhere. Stick to one print at a time.

Do Pair Whimsical Patterns With Basics. Try to avoid whimsical prints when possible. However, if you do wear a unicorn inspired blouse, balance it with basic accessories and other garments.

Don’t Wear Big Prints. Smaller prints create a more sophisticated outfit, and blends effortlessly with neutrals.

Do Stay Color Conscious. Choose one color from the shirt’s print, and then base your other clothing items and accessories around it. For example, pair a blue floral shirt with a navy blue skirt.

Don’t Wear Floral Shoes. Sometimes floral shoes make too much of a statement for work. Avoid wearing them with other patterns. A floral pair of shoes should be balanced with a neutral colored dress or blazer.

Do Wear Pattern Tops. Most designers make work appropriate prints on tops and blouses. This makes them the easiest article of clothing to plan business attire around.

Don’t Wear Floral Pants. Floral pants are the hardest articles of clothing to make look professional. Avoid them when possible.

Do Wear Stripes. Black and white stripes have a classic aesthetic that makes it easier than most prints to make look professional.

Don’t Avoid Floral Blazers. Be cautious when wearing floral blazers. Pick ones that do not have bold floral designs. Look for ones that have accents of floral, but not overpowered by it.

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