Hello Friday and outfit #20. Today I had lots of meetings and I needed something that read “very professional” and not “reckless twenty-something who takes off mid-week to go to a concert.” Enter in my office pants and a cardigan, how more professional looking could I get?

My husband just interjected and said that I could have worn a suit and then he busted into laughter. Why the laughter, you ask? Aren’t suits a normal fare for professionals? He brings this up because I accidentally wore a suit on my first day of work, ever. My very first day at my very first big girl job, 3 years ago. I worked in an engineering firm as an administrative assistant and my mother had just bought me a suit on sale from Banana Republic. Maybe I’d watched too many episodes of The West Wing but it seemed appropriate at the time, ok? And I mean a suit–a full on blazer with gold buttons, a button down shirt, a nice, masculine belt, and crisp pair of pleated slacks. I looked like a child dressed up in my father’s business wear for career day at school. (I always went as Donald Trump.) Turns out most secretaries don’t wear suits to work every day, or as I found out ever. 7th grade aside, that might have been one of the most awkward moments of my life to date.

Despite my husband’s jeers, I like to think of this outfit as a “soft suit.” You know, not a full on blazer with slacks, just a nice coordinating cardigan with some office pants. SO you know,a soft suit. Kind of like this: In fact, exactly like this.

(image via awkward family photos)

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34 Responses

  1. i used to work with a guy that wore suits his whole first week to try and make that first-day-suit less awkward. (it did not work.)

    anyway, i heart your office pants.

  2. Haha. I totally wore a full-on suit my first day of student teaching. Yeah, when do you ever see teachers in full-on suits, much less student teachers? At least I made a strong, professional first day impression on my cooperating teacher. Love the outfit!

  3. kendi, you look soo beautiful in these photos. and yet again i am loving how you always find a different place to pose, it gives each outfit such personality. love this one!

  4. i love every single outfit you feature on your blog.
    they are all perfectly put together and really beautiful. you also have a realistic style, which i love. it allows people to relate. i love the necklace.


  5. I love all your chunky heeled heels. They are ultra flattering.

    And wowzers, just when you thought gold lame couldn't get any tackier… holy eye sore!

  6. BAHAHA love the suit story! I agree that your outfit on day 20 is professional enough without wearing…well, a full suit! I really like those pants on you, as well as the pop of colour with your Anthropolgie blouse.

  7. love the color of the top and that last photo πŸ™‚ haha i think we all have awkward first day stories, but just look at you now!

  8. hehehe! cute story! the only time i ever wore a suit was to interview at a law firm for a receptionist position….i got the job, and then ditched the suit πŸ˜‰

  9. Love this work outfit. If I know I have a meeting I usually dress just a little more conservatively than a normal day too. Got to love the office environment!

  10. I love your outfit — it's definitely perfect for when a suit is too stuffy. I had one of those first days where I wore a suit and felt so overdressed too. Totally awwwwkward.

  11. Really pretty color combo with the teal and gray. I cannot stand suits and have never owned one- actually have long-term plans of never owning one!!

  12. Oh Kendi, I have busted out my suit on the first day of EVERY job I've had, and I ALWAYS regret it. I must take a page out of your book and become a "soft suit" convert!

  13. i love how you don't wear plain grain pants suits to the office. i wouldn't read you blog if you and Hillary Clinton shared a closet.

  14. I wore a suit to my first day of work, too! We've come a long way…
    Love outfit n.20. Just 10 more to go!

  15. your "soft suit" outfit is similar to what i wear to work, too most days. πŸ™‚ i work in a super, super, super casual office, but i like to look kind of professional while everyone else is wearing cutoff shorts and tank tops. πŸ™‚ and i still wear a suit to work sometimes. just because i think it commands some attention. πŸ™‚ i did it last week, in fact – i wore this beautiful white suit to work just for fun.

  16. I love your blog! You are actually one of my main inspirations for starting my own blog this week πŸ™‚

    I have had many of those overdressed moments. Even the mantra of "better overdressed than under" can't help you in those cases. This outfit above looks perfectly professional though!

  17. i just cannot picture myself in a suit! i have worked as a relief bank teller for 3 summers and only the VPs wear them … i'm in the clear for now.

    PS. when did you get those pants from gap? they look great.

  18. I love you Kendi – too funny!!! I love the "soft suit" – that too is my work wardrobe staple. And I am talking about the gold skating outfit suit – maybe that's why my coworkers always make comments on my outfits… πŸ™‚

    Small Time Style

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