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50plus style: Dressing for the office. A capsule wardrobe

Style Picks by Ceri Wheeldon

capsule working wardrobe 2

As many of us are working well into our 50s and 60s, I thought I would like to share some of my favourite style picks for dressing for the office.  This would be my ideal capsule wardrobe. I have selected pieces that you can really mix and match – well perhaps not the red top with the cobalt skirt for most of us – but you have to have some items that are fun, even in the workplace, that show off your style personality. I have included the  basic black trousers, skirt and crisp white shirt, but added some splashes of colour.

  1. I always used to get teased that I used to sign my biggest deals in headhunting days while wearing red – so I had to start off with something red to kick off my choices for this capsule collection. I just loved the vibrancy of the colour – and the ruffles help to soften the look.

Price £49 from House of Fraser james lakeland ruffle blouse 49

  1. Although separates can be really versatile, I always like to include at least one dress for business. The micro check is timeless – and never really goes out of style. This dress is both professional and sophisticated.

Price  £190 from John Lewiskaren millen dress 190

  1. A peplum jacket can help create a waist , and really draw the eye in. This jacket by Ted Baker is both professional and feminine.  It really works well with all the other items I have chosen for the collection

Price £215 from John Lewisred baker peplum jacket


  1. A blouse with an oversized tie neck adds a touch of glamour and sophistication.  It works particularly well with the cobalt blue skirt

Price £149 from House of Fraserted baker top 149


5. Cobalt Blue is one of my favourite colours. The simple lines of this wrap skirt again make it timeless.

Price £69 from John Lewis wrap skirt


6. Trousers don’t have to be plain at work , as long as they are well tailored. The anchor print on these is subtle. All of the tops selected would work well with them.

Price £115 from  House of Fraser trousers 115


  1. A pair of black tailored trousers is pretty much a working wardrobe staple. These are tapered sp create a sharp silhouette.

Price £110 from John Lewis jigsaw vlack trousers

  1. Another staple for the workplace is the classic black pencil skirt. This has zip detailing on the front, just to add a little more interest.

Price £39 from House of Fraser black pencil skirt 39


  1. A crisp white shirt is another working wardrobe staple. This one has dart detailing for a more flattering fit.


Price £69 House of Fraser white shirt 69



  1. An everyday tote bag – this is an investment piece – roomy but structured enough to look smart and professional

Price £310 from House of Fraser I_186721318_00_20160108


  1. Classic court shoes – another working wardrobe staple! Court shoes really do help to pull together a polished look.

Price £65 (in sale)  from House of Fraser court shoe



You may have noticed that there is no number 10 !! What accessory would you like to add to complete the look?





Ceri Wheeldon

Ceri is Founder and Editor of Fabafterfifty.co.uk She is a frequent speaker at events and in the media on topics related to women over 50 , including style and living agelessly. With 20+ years experience as a headhunter Ceri also now helps support those looking to extend their working lives.

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