Basic Essentials : Smart Casuals

Smart casuals have become the new-age work wear for major corporate giants like Google, Facebook, Hindustan Unilever Limited, Infosys and more.

Smart casuals is a very ambiguous dress code and may vary extensively with different localities, contexts, cultures, and events. For this post, I draw inspiration from my own experiences of the work culture at Kosha (an Indian label for all things travel based out of Mumbai).
Essentially, smart casuals’ is nothing more than your best casual clothes and accessories. Pick anything that is comfortable, functional, lets you express your style and makes you feel good. There are no gender, colour and fit restrictions. If you prefer a flowy top, or a curve-hugging dress, or bright summer colours all of them are great for daily work wear. 
But, what about tomorrow’s important presentation, or an interview, or that crucial business meet?
If you would like to dress up (or down, your choice) for a particular event, here is my go-to guide.
If you wear jeans and t-shirts or polo shirts to an office, just throw on a blazer and you are good for any meeting or interview. Focus on your grooming and shoes. Nice sneakers are as good as formal monk straps, heels or oxford shoes. Check if your nails, hair and make-up are how you want it to be. Add accessories like watches or rings and necklaces if you prefer them, or if they make you happy and more confident. Make sure that your bag compliments your look and it is able to carry all that you require. Check out this video by The Idle Man on how to sport the look. However, even though the video may address it as a male-only attire, the look is too classy to be gendered. 
If you prefer skirts, woven tops and dresses for your daily work wear, you are already in vogue. Coordinate your wardrobe to achieve a look that compliments your style and personality for a particular event. Personally, I prefer cotton, linen and other natural fibres for this look. 

Image Source:

Image source: Cad & Cloth


Image Source : @maria_bernard on Instagram.

All of the looks above are good for daily work-wear. Team it up with a stole or summer blazer for a presentation or an important meeting.  As mentioned above, focus on your grooming and shoes. 

In the looks above, we have focused on summer or tropical climates. For colder seasons layering of woollen coats, cardigans, sweaters, mufflers, caps, etc. becomes important. We will do another post on winter smart casual looks soon!

Until then, tell everybody at your workplace to buy pink clothes

Author: Sukriti Suryavanshi

I am a fashion designer. Anime, comic zines, graphic novels, indie music, spoken word poetry, theatre and performances interest me. Travelling, food and beer are the reasons why I would have not given up on human life.
Most of my work deals with understanding gender & sexuality – observing their performance in everyday lives, and how they affect fashion. I also enjoy creating images or visual stories of personal experiences.
I am currently working as a Sr. Fashion Designer and Merchandiser at Kosha. Kosha is a travel wear brand based out of Mumbai, whose aim is to make every journey sustainable for the planet and blissful for the traveller.

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