You may not be headed back to school this season (gone are the good old days), but a few new duds might just be the thing you need to banish those end-of-summer blues. With a few simple fall wardrobe swaps (think: a chic trench, fancy flats and suede pencil skirts — swoon), showing the boss that you’re always game for new challenges (i.e. dragging yourself out of bed on a cold, gray morning when the snooze button is calling your name) becomes an effortless — and incredibly stylish — exercise. Your working-girl schedule is already filled to the brim without adding new season shopping to the list, so we’ve gone ahead and pulled some of fall’s must-have pieces that will do your style and HR proud.
1. Zara Plumetis Tunic ($70): Classic white button-downs are fab and all, but sometimes (we’re looking at you, midweek slump) you need to pull out the big guns, i.e. this vibrant embroidered number. With architectural slingbacks and a fiery red pout serving as backup, a mild case of the workday blues won’t stand a chance.
2. All Black Mirrored Oxfords ($188): Forget blue suede — these quicksilver stunners are straight-up goals. Kick your standard black pumps to the curb and slip into these silvery Oxfords that would look ah-mazing with a streamlined suit or a simple sweater dress. Confidence and a girlboss attitude unfortunately not included.
3. Mango Contrast Pockets Cardigan ($80): Whether you’re combatting office AC or blustery fall winds, a cozy cardigan is a must-have for any working girl’s wardrobe. With its blazer-inspired styling and leather-look pockets, this knit number is the epitome of effortless polish. Toss it on over a structured blouse, cropped trousers and statement ankle boots for a down-to-business getup that strikes the ultimate balance of comfy and on-duty cool.
4. Ann Taylor Geo Mini Silk Scarf ($35): Vibrant hues and a petite geometric print transform this sophisticated silk scarf into a surefire way to make any on-the-job ensemble pop. The only thing missing? An oversized button-down, suede pencil skirt and statement studs.
5. Wide Waist Pleated Trousers ($115): Like a fine wine, these burgundy trousers will only get better with time. Rock ’em now with a rib knit top, embroidered ankle boots and a metallic choker, then watch as they evolve gracefully with every passing season.
6. Warehouse Tile Print Pyjama Shirt ($80): Introducing the next best thing to the snooze button: the pajama top. Practically made for days when you just can’t even, this silky tile-printed blouse flawlessly combines off-duty chic with girlboss polish, giving you the confidence you need to slay that to-do list. Team it with treggings and block-heel loafers to round out your lazy-girl-at-work look.
7. Free People Ruffle Fan Pullover ($148): A common office misconception? Thinking you can’t stray from traditional sartorial options. Erroneous on all accounts! Show off that killer personality with unexpected twists on your favorite everyday pieces. Swap a snoozy crew-neck sweater with this bell-sleeved pullover for an instant punch of pizzazz. Bonus points for one-of-a-kind baubles and a statement-making mani.
8. Matiko Rey Flats ($128): Life’s too short to stick to so-called “sensible shoes” with zero personality. With their embroidered laces and coppery suede upper, these d’Orsay flats are just what the doctor ordered. Strap them on with a pleated metallic skirt and silk blouse to achieve office best-dressed status in seconds.
9. J.Crew Collection Cigarette Pant in Heavy Shantung ($198): Boring black trousers just can’t compete with shantung cigarette pants with this much edge. Skip the power suit for your next big presentation and allow these high-shine stunners to give you the boost of confidence you need to knock the boss’s socks off. Style alongside a bow-neck blouse and an abstract cuff for extra wow factor.
10. & Other Stories Leather Skirt ($275): A skirt with this much sass must be shown off, and the office is the perfect place to start. Tone down the ‘tude with soft, feminine separates, like a cashmere sweater or silk blouse, and strappy Mary Janes that are both elegant and edgy.
11. Zara Contrast Leather Bucket Bag Details ($139): Every working girl knows that a chic, sturdy tote is the holy grail of any office-ready accessory. Give your bag swag an enviable place to call home with this two-tone tote that will go with just about everything in your wardrobe. Looking for a little extra flair? Just knot a bright silk scarf around the strap and you’re good to go.
12. C/meo Collective The Definition Coat ($310): On fleek doesn’t even begin to cover this DDG coat. Between the classic shape, wrap silhouette and circular detailing, it pretty much has the whole modern femme thing down pat. Need insta polish on the go? Toss it on with a pair of killer heels and a swipe of berry lipstick, then get ready to knock ‘em dead.
13. & Other Stories Frills Flounce Blouse ($95): We can’t stop obsessing over this elegant, ethereal blouse. After-work shenanigans on the agenda? Pop this shell-studded number on with glitzy drop earrings, embellished heels and an office-appropriate leather skirt for a look that does desk-to-dinner dressing like a boss.
14. J.Crew Italian Featherweight Cashmere Boyfriend Crewneck Sweater ($228): We’re all about edgy new pieces that can shake up the work week in a snap, but there’s certainly something to be said for classic, versatile layers that bring an element of polish to everything in your wardrobe with little to no effort. Whether you team it with flared crop trousers or a suede pencil skirt, this lightweight cashmere sweater will never disappoint.
15. Vila Tie Front Blazer ($57): There are no two ways about it: Every girlboss needs at least one workhorse blazer in her closet that she can bust out at a moment’s notice to bring a bit of refinement to any on-the-job ensemble. But if traditional tailoring just isn’t your thing, a classic blazer might feel a tad too stuffy — and that’s where this tie-front wonder comes in. The relaxed silhouette combines lazy-girl appeal with down-to-business panache for a streamlined look that nails it every time.
16. Mango Patent Heeled Loafers ($80): ICYMI: Loafers have officially shed their preppy façade to become one of 2016’s most sought-after shoes. Yup — they’re right up there with modern block heels and lace-up ballet flats. Snag a few extra style points by taking these chain-link stunners out on a test drive for a Monday morning meeting, along with a sophisticated jumpsuit and a don’t-mess cuff.
17. & Other Stories Cropped Kick-Flare Trousers ($85): There’s nothing quite like a classic, but even your most tried-and-true office basics need updating every once in a while. Trade out uninspired trousers for kick-flare pants that are guaranteed to set you apart at the office. DO style them with a sleeveless turtleneck top, bright block-heel slingbacks and a few sleek stacking rings.
18. J.Crew Lucite Link Necklace ($60): Tryin’a break the chains but the chains bring the style factor WAY up — meaning you’ll be busting out this beauty every chance you get.
19. Topshop Jacquard Ankle Boots ($125): These aren’t your average ankle boots. When cool weather means strappy sandals and flats are no longer an option, these jacquard bad boys will give your getup the extra boost it needs to achieve scene-stealer status. For a boho-on-the-go vibe, team them with a knit midi skirt, airy blouse and tassesl-tastic earrings.
20. Mango Guipure Appliqué Dress ($80): Enter the throw-on-and-go dress that will save you on mornings when you hit snooze one too many times. The fuss-free styling and ladylike lace serve up a serious dose of flawless, especially when styled with platform Oxfords, perfectly tousled locks and a sleeveless blazer.
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