It wasn't all that long ago that a woman's work uniform was limited to the likes of pencil skirts and pumps. And while there's nothing wrong with such polished pieces, what constitutes office attire today has a much broader scope. As corporate dress codes have loosened up, it's become socially acceptable to mix once weekend-only pieces into your Monday-to-Friday wardrobe. Jeans, sneakers, and t-shirts may not fly in the most conservative corporate offices (except maybe on casual Friday), but if you work somewhere with a bit more flexibility, there are simple styling tricks you can employ to incorporate them into your professional look. To prove it in part, you'll find five work-appropriate outfits to wear with sneakers below, all of which you can easily recreate next week.
The key to pulling off tennis shoes on the job is to find ways to dress them up with the help of more formal pieces. High-tops and jeans might skew too casual, but swap your denim for trousers, and the ensemble hits a refined balance that most anyone will approve of (if not envy). Sneakers are also an ideal choice if you're looking to experiment with some of fall's office-appropriate trends. Bold colors or two-piece suits might seem intimidatingly loud at first, but sneakers tone down trends enough to make them feel cool, not campy.
If you're ready for a serving of inspiration, check out the outfits below (all with sneakers of course), broken down to explain exactly how you can re-create each look. While you'll experience the added benefit of avoiding heel aches and blisters, you'll also see that sneakers can be just as stylish as the heels and flats you usually reach for. Promise.
Black Sneakers + High-Waisted Trousers + Trench
Take your fall workwear staples and dress them down with a pair of sleek black tennis shoes. For a more formal office, darker sneakers are subtle enough to go relatively unnoticed.
Low-Top Sneakers + Long-Sleeve Dress
While a polished long-sleeve dress and pair of heels is a classic workwear combination, swapping in a pair of low-top sneakers maintains a professional air while offering an added sense of effortlessness.
Chunky Sneakers + Button Down + Midi Skirt
Two pieces in every working woman's closet: a button-down and midi skirt. Their universality makes them the ideal ensemble for wearing with a trendier statement sneaker. If you've been considering testing out the dad sneaker trend, consider this outfit your way to ease into it.
White Sneakers + Tonal Outfit
This fall, bold colors have usurped the traditional subdued tones that tend to take over as temperatures chill. But, to contrast color from head-to-toe, keep your sneaker simple and streamlined.
High-Top Sneakers + Suit
If you've written off suiting as being too stuffy, it's time to give it a second chance. Try a fashion-forward suit (like one with an oversized fit or in a fun print) with a pair of high-top sneakers to dress it down.