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Lots of folks in the Carolinas are heading back to the office after more than a year of working from home. Bank of America, the Queen City’s 4th largest employer, wants vaccinated employees back at the office after Labor Day. But will employees who’ve enjoyed the comfort of working in sweatpants return to uptown Charlotte buttoned up?
Some fashion watchers say the rebels will be the workers who show up in suits and heels. The rest of your coworkers will probably embrace less restricting silhouettes. Don’t mistake a relaxed dress code as an excuse to rock your yoga pants and basketball shorts to your first in-person meeting. Some fashion should probably stay on Zoom, but the nap dress, slip on sneakers and polo shirts are expected to be the new norm.

Work pants and jeans will be looser with a touch of stretch, giving a nod to those delightful elastic waistbands that nurtured our pandemic weight gain.  Women will be pairing fashionable sneakers and even Crocs with blazers, skirts and dresses instead of torturing their feet in corn-producing pumps. Wing-tips shoes and other forms conservative footwear is likely to continue to dominate meetings and conferences. However, work fashion mogul Sarah LaFleur, the CEO of M.M.LaFleur, believes the day-to-day style will be something she calls “power casual.”  Don’t be surprised to see more women in jumpsuits and men with t-shirts under their jackets for days spent mostly behind a desk. 

Not sure of what to wear? Take a look at your supervisor’s back-to-work wardrobe to get a clue. 

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