This week I started my internship and fashion-wise it's a huge change! I'm used to wearing a uniform or jeans and a nice t-shirt to work but now I am no longer doing a job, this is a career, so the attire is required to be much more professional. To be honest I had a few outfits that looked smart enough to wear for my interview and first day but I quickly realized that my wardrobe was essentially devoid of work appropriate clothing.
Buying a whole new set of outfits was absolutely out of the question, my budget would totally crash and burn, so I had to devise some ways of combining my lolita closet with some key items to create an appropriate blend for the professional world. I think I did a pretty good job, so far I've managed to get through the week and felt totally within the boundaries of office fashion.
Pictured above is one of the outfits I wore to work. It consists of four pieces: a blouse, pinafore, necklace and shoes. Surprisingly three out of four of the items came from my lolita wardrobe, only the pinafore was new.
There are several ways to combine lolita with your work wardrobe, here are a few examples:
Loli Blouse and Office Skirt
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The most obvious and often the easiest way to merge your frills with your work is to pair a lolita blouse with a simple skirt appropriate for the office. When selecting a blouse it is best to choose one that is not overly sweet, candy colours are okay but when it's covered in tiny bows and has heart shaped buttons it's just not going to look right. Some lolita shoes are ok to wear but they are few and far between. If you have them just use your Mary-Jane shoes. It's best to match your shoes to a neutral colour in your outfit and select flats or a sensible heel. Lolita jewelry and bags are fine as long as they are sensible (so sadly you'll have to leave your Bunny Bear Bag and plastic sweet rings at home).
Loli Skirt and Office Top
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This the opposite of the previous variation, however it is a little harder to match mainstream tops with lolita skirts without getting an overall lolita feel to the outfit (I tend to go for the most loliable tops available and then I'm just wearing lolita again). One method of toning down the loli is to find a neutral coloured top, one that's simple, and light and tuck it into your skirt. Next layer a high waisted cardigan in a complimentary colour to your skirt over the top to add that put together feeling to your ensemble. Make sure that your cardi is not long as lolita skirts almost always sit at your waist, a long cardigan would hang awkwardly over the top of the skirt and just look weird. Skip the petticoat, the last thing you need is to be knocking things of neighboring desks, or go with a very light petti just to give your skirt a teeny bit of shape. Again, match your shoes with the neutral colour of your top.
Loli Dress and Office Blazer
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The most difficult item to coordinate into an office appropriate outfit would have to be the dress. Jumperskirts and one pieces are the single frilliest, ruffliest item in the loli cosmos, they are the bread and butter of our lolita sandwich. Some dresses are simply not going to be befitting of an office atmosphere no matter what, big prints or crazy pastels will have to be saved for full lolita days. When selecting a jumperskirt or one piece to wear to work less is more. Try to find a dress that is plain, has a light, floral pattern or very simple design. If there are removable bows then remove them and make sure to leave the petticoat at home in your wardrobe.
Now you are ready to add the quintessential office item to your coordinate: a blazer. You should try to find a cropped blazer, one with a short waist, so that it does not interfere with the high waist cut of your lolita dress. Blazers do not have to be ugly, in fact you can find them in cute, soft colours and interesting cuts. Just make sure that when all is said and done you look professional.
Hopefully this article will help you get ideas on how to incorporate your lolita clothing into a totally professional career outfit and save you money in the process. Remember to use your discretion when putting together an outfit and err on the side of caution. I hope that you feel lovely while you are at work, feeling cute makes you more productive!