For most men who don’t wear a designated uniform for their career, dress codes for work have loosened up to such an extent that what was once considered appropriate only for ‘Casual Friday’ is no de rigueur for any day of the week. While ultra traditionalists might mourn the security or predictability of having a designated work wardrobe, the almost totally blurred line that we now enjoy between our attire both on- and off-the-clock opens up exciting possibilities to express our personal style in the workplace. So the question is no longer “can I get away with wearing denim at work”, it’s more how can I do it in a way that looks professional.
Of course, jeans will be the first denim item that leaps to mind. The best way to think about making your jeans work for your 9-5 is to look out for similar qualities in them as you would a pair of tailored trousers: no rips of distressing, minimal pockets and detailing, and a tailored cut. It’s also best to err on the side of a darker indigo wash, as this will look smarter and pair better with more formal shoes, like suede loafers or black leather Brogues. Tuck in a dress shirt or a solid-coloured long-sleeve polo and finish with a leather belt that compliments your shoes.
And, unlike your casual jeans, don’t be tempted to have a turn-up: a crisp hem, whether at the ankle or breaking over your shoe, will automatically look more work-appropriate.
However, there is an even easier way to incorporate a denim vibe into your office attire – and that’s simply to embrace chambray. This lightweight-yet-hardy blue cloth is incredibly versatile, and especially useful if your workplace is more formal, as you’ll frequently find it turned into dress shirts, like the ones on-site right now from Jermyn Street shirtmaker Emma Willis. Wear open collar or with a matt cotton or knitted silk tie to instantly casualise your suit.
Navy Yacht Loafers
Frodingham Slim Leg Jean
Brushed Cotton Shirt - Denim
Braided Belt - Walnut Brown / Brass
Extrafine Merino Rollneck Navy
Jeans Linen Shirt