Who says that fashion is solely for women? Since the early times, men had also been known to be particular in how they look and dress. In fact, back then, wealthy men put together a respectable appearance by incorporating visual symbols of social status in their daily attire.
Fast forward to today, the fashion industry now caters to a wide range of preferences and personalities. Thus, whatever your personal aesthetic is, you’re bound to find clothing items that can help you express yourself and allow you to stand out from a crowd.
However, social and cultural standards can sometimes be limiting when it comes to fashion. Furthermore, in the business industry, men are expected to be in formal apparel and follow distinct dress codes.
For instance, in New Zealand, when conducting business, people often dress conservatively — with men wearing formal white button-down shirts, ties, and dark-coloured suits. Wardrobe can be more relaxed when New Zealanders are not engaged in business activities, but to keep a professional look, neutral hues like grey, camel, navy, white, and ivory are favoured.
Accordingly, in different countries, there are different sets of clothing standards. If you are a professional working in an office setting, it’s highly likely that you also aim to look presentable. Need help curating your corporate wardrobe? Worry no more. Below, we’ll discuss some essential pieces and items that every office-going man must own.
When shopping for outerwear, it’s best to choose versatile types that can easily go from formal to casual. A perfect balance between these two vibes is the navy blazer, with its neutral colour giving off the impression that you mean business without the rigidness of a structured suit.
It’s also suggested that you invest in a high-quality winter coat, preferably a wool coat as it offers a great combination of function and style. Choose one with the right length for your stature and opt for a classic colour like grey or navy.
An Oxford white button-down shirt is a staple for a reason. It’s crisp texture and polished shape makes it ideal for building that smart and masculine look when worn with a blazer and tailored work pants from NZ stores. However, pairing it with denim jeans can create that cool, laid-back outfit for an off-duty weekend.
A genuine cashmere sweater is also a good investment as it gives any attire a dapper and refined touch. Explore with different necklines and various warm and soft shades. Lastly, you need to have at least several good-fitting plain shirts in white, black, and navy. Both round-neck and V-neck tees serve multiple purposes and are suitable for plenty of business agendas.
Work pants don’t have to be stuffy and dull. Looking into different types of material, fabric, and structure can help you avoid that boring uniform vibe. Slim-cut chinos in lighter colours are versatile trousers that work well with a variety of shirts, blazers, and jackets. Denim jeans of a darker wash like deep indigo are suitable for many work occasions, but can be transformed into an effortless casual look. Opt for a slim-fitting pair that is neither too tight nor too flexible. It’s also best to avoid added details and elaborate designs.
As fashion icon Tom Ford has stated, ‘Dressing well is a form of good manners.’ Indeed, by wearing suitable clothes in the workplace, you are showing people that you have proper business etiquette. Accordingly, having some staple go-to pieces will help make dressing for work a lot faster and more organised. Instead of quantity, it’s better to focus on the quality of your wardrobe items.