career lifestyle

Career Corner | How to Wear Flats without looking Frumpy


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Welcome to Post 2 of #CareerCorner, a weekly series that discusses all things 9-5! If you missed the first one, don’t be too hard on yourself. The series kicked off last week and you can check out the first post here. As promised, this week’s topic is a submission from reader, Katelyn: She wants to know if it’s possible to wear flats to work without looking frumpy. Giiiiiirl, YAS.

For a long time, I thought an outfit was only complete and polished with a fine pair of heels. 8 years in the government and a few sports injuries later, my opinion has changed. Not to mention the flats out there these days: loafers, slidestassels… ladies, the world is your oyster. Now I know some of you are rolling your eyes and that’s OK because a few years ago I was in that same boat. They made me feel really young and a huge reason I liked wearing heels was to be as tall (or taller) than the guys I worked with. They had to respect me if I was taller than them, right?

Yes, with heels comes some magical sense of power. However, crafting the perfect outfit with a great pair of patent tassel flats can also have the same effect. We’re not talking about that Tory Burch Reva flat bullshit. Picture it: an A-line dress with ballet flats. Maybe I’d be less inclined to take you seriously because you looked a little younger. Not fair, but true. Now picture: black cigarette pants, a flowy white blouse, and a pair of pointed patent loafers (blazer optional). Queen, YAS.

Still not sure? These are the three requirements a flat shoe must meet before I purchase it for work wear:

  1. Thin. Physically thin. Is this a CLOG or is it a chic little number that will go with multiple looks?
  2. Comfortable. It’s thin. GREAT. But is it comfortable? Once you wear it in, will you be able to live in these from 9-5?
  3. Sleek. It’s thin and it’s comfortable. Lottery win. Are those alarmingly thin Parisian girls wearing them on Pinterest? BUY.

Respect in the workplace should come from how you carry yourself and the type of work you do. Unfortunately, in some male-dominated workplaces, this isn’t always the case. As women, no matter what we do, in some instances we’ll be reduced to what we look like. It’s not right, but in some places it’s just the way it is. Without diving into this too much (we’re covering this topic next Friday), my advice is to dress for yourself, within the appropriate dress code confines of your particular workplace, and comfortably. I find that on days I feel my best, my outfit is on point. These are usually days I’m wearing something chic and comfortable so I can kick as much ass as possible. Typically, this doesn’t include heels. While it’s true I have a box of probably 15 pair under my desk, they’re not used much. I’m telling you ladies, invest in some chic looking flats and you’ll never go back. Gone are the days of strained arches and shin splints.

Shop a few of my favorite flats here:

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  • Jess
    August 19, 2016 at 10:07 pm

    I love this! I have been toying with the idea of switching it up and going with a chic flat. Time to go shopping!

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      District Sparkle
      August 23, 2016 at 3:06 pm

      Absolutely! Would love to see the flats you end up choosing!