Anthropologie Style: A work outfit with a story
I grew up playing with my mother’s old briefcase. Digging for the treasures of her success as she rushed to the office in her black pantsuit and short hair styled modestly.
Her old drivers license and credit cards in an overworked wallet.
Receipts scattered about the pockets from hurried lunches.
A tattered BlackBerry, the end-of-a-century revolution.
Bits of personal in the crevices – bobby pins, hand sanitizer, Trident gum wrappers.
My play developed what work looked like to me for the modern woman;
Pantsuit: a rebellion
I emulated my mother, as daughters do.
Then denied anyone who said I looked like her, as daughters do that too.
Then the world expanded as I grew and we all shifted with the evolution.
(Everything looks fresh after a few rinse cycles).
My play turned into purpose as the modern woman’s uniform evolved;
Pantsuit: a nation
Black: a closet staple
Haircut: a sign of change
The work outfit evolves with the work itself. There are a myriad of ways to have a career, a family, a life and so too are there outfits for it – an outward reflection of the internal grind.
My uniform these days?
A layering of both play and purpose;
White tee: to begin work swiftly (and may the coffee not spill).
Blazer cardigan: for professional ease to flex vision midstream.
Textured trousers: the expression of personal boundaries, and meaning it.
Wispy earrings: a reminder that serious is a bit too serious.
We often overlook the history behind the evolution (did you know women weren’t permitted to wear pantsuits – or pants of any kind – on the United States Senate floor until 1993?) but it’s good when we slow down to learn it. That way we know where to look when seeking the treasures of success (a beginner’s tip: dig to the bottom).
I found them in my mother’s old briefcase;
A memento to remind me who I am and what I strive for.
Lunch receipts scattered after friendly conversations and new opportunities.
A pocket-sized way to connect to the world.
Bits of personal in the crevices – because the work will always be personal.
And to my Mother: Merci.
For being the modern woman in a black pantsuit who raised her daughter to be worthy of the rose velvet trousers she wears today.