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How To Relax Your Work Wardrobe

How To Relax Your Work Wardrobe

14 Feb 2023

How To Relax Your Work Wardrobe

By James Shackell

Work wardrobes and corporate wardrobes have changed a bit in the last few years, for obvious reasons. Some offices are still firmly suit-and-tie, and that’s fine, but most are starting to loosen things up a little. Chinos are making a comeback. Suiting separates are all the rage. There’s even rumours of sneakers (pro office tip: don’t wear sneakers to work until you see your boss wearing sneakers to work).

Yep, the old days of corporate chic are officially over (we’re calling it). In this article, we’re going to look at how to relax your work wardrobe, but you should also check out our Office Edit for shoe and accessory inspiration. We keep it updated, based on the latest workwear trends and product launches. Okay, time to loosen that tie. Here’s how to relax your work wardrobe.

Suit & Tie

Some offices will always require a suit and tie, global pandemic or not. But that doesn’t mean you’re stuck hobbling around in painful business shoes. If your workplace insists on leather lace-ups, try something with more support, like our DYLAN dress shoes, maybe paired with a sleek MONTORO briefcase. They’ve got our special D’ORO innersole, backed with half leather sole. It’s like walking around on two very stylish marshmallows. For something a little more casual, and warm weather-friendly, check out our ALBERTO loafers. You can even kick these off under your desk for that weirdly satisfying socks-on-carpet feel.

Smart casual vibe

A lot of offices are starting to realise there’s more to life than a three-piece suit. These are the ‘smart casual offices’ and they require smart casual shoes. (Pro tip: if your office has a mini-fridge stocked with beer, or any number of ping pong tables, it’s a smart casual office). This is the perfect excuse to mix up fabrics and relax your work wardrobe. During the summer months, opt for natural fabrics like linen and cotton, as well as roomier, wide-leg chino pants, cuffed high. For shoes, think chukka boots, like the DECLAN in brown leather or the CORTES in a soft brown suede.

Sneakers in the office

A few years ago, this would have been a hard ‘No’. But we’re living in a post-apocalyptic corporate world now, and the old rules are off. You can definitely get away with sneakers in the office now, especially as a commuter option. We’ve written an entire guide to business sneakers, but here are some simple rules to follow. Keep your sneakers clean and sharp. No crazy patterns, mud or clashing colours. Look for good-quality leather sneakers, like our DECO 2.0 or SMITH. And think about colour, too. White sneakers will work under navy chinos, while tan or khaki sneakers will complement an earthy linen suit. If in doubt, double check with your boss.

Go to Chelsea

We always tell guys: if you’re stuck for ideas, go to Chelsea. The humble Chelsea boot is one of the most versatile boots you’re ever going to buy, and it can comfortably go from weekend road trip to Thursday WIP meeting. For the slightly more formal office, look for a dark leather Chelsea boot with a slim silhouette and chiseled toe, like our BRONSON. These will look great under anything, including your best suit. For a more laid-back vibe, underneath some cuffed chinos, try the rounded DEXTER or the relaxed HARLEY.

Next level relaxation

If you work really doesn’t mind what’s on your feet, and all you care about is comfort, try espadrilles. Fair warning: these are only appropriate office footwear if you work in an organic ashram or Silicon Valley tech start-up, but their kick-on, kick-off flexibility is perfect for summer. For something equally flexible, but slightly more formal, check out our TREY slip-ons or DAYTONA leather driving shoes. These guys are incredibly comfy, while still looking professional. Pair them with some loose-fitting chinos and a linen shirt and you’ve got possibly the most laid-back office outfit ever designed by man.


Accessories are an important (if often overlooked) part of your work wardrobe. They can make or break an outfit. For more formal offices, a briefcase is a great way to level up your look. You can either go full leather, like the HUGO, or a mix of leather and canvas, like the CRUISER. In a more casual office, try a messenger bag, or a briefcase with a shoulder strap. Lastly, belts. Don’t neglect your belt. Even in a smart casual office, finishing your chinos with a BANE brown belt can be the difference between pub-ready and client-ready. If in doubt, always steer on the side of professional. No-one ever got in trouble for looking too professional.

Our relaxed work go-to's