The MVP’s Of A Professional Woman’s Wardrobe
As we each look to become more mindful in our consumption habits – doing away with excessive disposability and waste for the sake of our planet – the appeal of curating a timeless wardrobe grows stronger.
The area of our lives that this works best for is our professional wardrobes. The stuff we wear to meetings or the office that require next-to-no consideration in the morning. And, thankfully, there are more than a handful of womenswear brands that make this an achievable task. For me it’s a brand like Georgia Alice. I feel correct in GA. I feel like myself. In the context of a professional wardrobe, I invested in the Memory Blazer four years ago and come autumn and winter I wear it no less than three days a week, usually four. It’s everything I want in a blazer; not too fitted but still with the suggestion of a feminine silhouette, exaggerated sleeves, one single button to close, wrinkle-proof, lint-proof, and doesn’t require constant dry-cleaning.
It turns out I wasn’t the only one: When I probed readers on the MVPs of their professional wardrobes, the timeless pieces they consciously invested in and wear over and over again, Georgia Alice came up a lot. The Moss Pant (“Amazing all year-round, super comfy and super chic.”), Jimmy Jacket (“The pronounced shoulder pads make me feel like a badass.”) and Boy Blazer (“It’s timeless – I can’t imagine ever outgrowing it.”) were particularly popular. Also on the topic of jackets, readers shared their affinity for any of Acne’s leather jackets (“Wear with confidence. Own forever.”), Helen Cherry’s classic Paris Jacket, Camilla & Marc’s Dimmer Blazer (“There are lots of copies of this but people can always spot the real deal. It’s an investment piece that shows your colleagues that you’re willing to invest in yourself and your career.”), and Wynn Hamlyn’s Curve Blazer and Scarf Blazer (“Wynn’s suiting is the best quality. It’s robust for everyday use and it doesn’t date.”).
In a similar vein to the Moss Pant, Paris Georgia’s Marnie Pant were highly-praised (“They’re comfortable, fit perfectly, and work really well with our company dress-code.“) as were Ruby’s Firebird Pant (“I wear them at least three days a week, they are so flattering, and they come in black, white, and beige.”), Kate Sylvester’s Josephine Flares and Marle’s England Skirt. Readers favoured bags that were functional and resilient, like Deadly Ponies’ Mr Leopard or Mr Pinch, and were happy to invest in timeless pieces like Fendi’s understated 2Jours leather tote (a few readers scored theirs second-hand through websites like Vestiaire Collective) and Louis Vuitton’s Neverfull MM.
And when it came to footwear, comfort was paramount. Loafers were popular; in particular those made by Karen Walker like the Greta Loafer or her since-sold-out collaboration with Beau Coops. But no brand featured more heavily than R.M. Williams; female readers praised the Adelaide boot in Black, Millicent boot in Chestnut, and male readers said they lived in their suede Craftsman boots in Black (v chic boys!).
But there were also a lot of brands that didn’t make the cut that I think are worth mentioning, brands that remind us why Phoebe Philo’s Cèline has such enduring appeal – because Philo was un-compromised in her pursuit of practical, liveable luxury. In 2020, I think The Frankie Shop, Low Classic, Jac+Jack, Cos (two flagship stores are opening in Auckland imminently!), Maggie Marilyn’s new permanent range Somewhere, and Anna Quan are all doing this particularly well.