Add a dash of panache to your work attire
Feb 09,2007 00:00 by Bend_Weekly_News_Sources

If your work clothes are as exciting as the bare gray walls of a cubicle, adding some spice to your wardrobe could bring a much-needed touch of flair to the daily grind.

For millions of women, work attire evokes images of stuffy, uncomfortable clothes and bland color schemes. But adding style to your work wardrobe can be quick and easy, and you don't need to sacrifice professionalism in the process.

The Lafayette 148 Silk Charmeuse Analise Blouse and Gilded Jacquard Slim Skirt take you from day to night.
Edward Wilkerson, design director for Lafayette 148 New York, has appeared on such popular television programs as "The Oprah Winfrey Show" to offer his knowledge and unique perspective of women's fashion. Here are some simple tips from Wilkerson for enhancing your work wardrobe without spending excessive time or money:

* Keep it simple. Sometimes, less can be more. Instead of incorporating too many unique additions into your work attire, keep your outfits simple and choose one area or piece of clothing to accentuate. This way, you maintain a look that is polished yet uniquely your own.

* Know yourself. Determine what colors flatter your shape and skin tone. Once you have figured out which colors look best on you, it's easier to dress more creatively and still do so with aplomb.

* Stay true. If you know the kinds of clothes with which you're comfortable, don't throw them to the wind for the trend of the moment. Though trendy clothing may be hip today, remember that trends come and go. Besides, your own style and personal expression are more beautiful than any fad or fashion craze.

* Have all the staples for a professional night out. In the case of office parties or after-work get-togethers, stock your closet with several "fun and flirty" dresses as well as an assortment of wraps and jackets. A metallic top also adds dazzle to a daytime outfit. At night, pair it with a shiny clutch or a coordinating pair of shoes.

* Prioritize. Be willing to spend more for classic, versatile wardrobe pieces that can be worn for years to come. Trendy clothing and accessories should have a lower priority, and can always be added or taken away from essentials like blouses, pants and skirts.

Look to designer collections like Lafayette 148 for a variety of pieces that are stylish, professional and well-made. One quality article of clothing can go a long way for both your style and your pocketbook.