s you mature into adulthood, you may feel as though you don’t have the same liberties you did in high school and college to express yourself through your clothing. However, that doesn’t have to be true! You can still follow business casual or formal wear by adding a bit of you into it. You also don’t have to be a fashion expert to pull any of it off!

No matter what you consider your current fashion sense to be right now, you can learn something from:

  • Going Back to Basics
  • Add a Pop with Patterns
  • A Touch of You in Accessories
Young adult woman wears black and khaki in a business casual work outfit.
Neutral colors are a great place to start if you do not know how to dress with style as a young adult!

Going Back to Basics

The basics give you a strong foundation for creating your own unique style as an adult.

What is meant by the basics? A couple of things! The basics are: the typical articles of clothing you see, the common ways of styling clothes, and neutral colors! Afterall, neutrals are perfect for any work setting. While these may be the basics, they are the basics for a reason. They have always been in style and will continue to be!

For Men: Never over think the basics! A well tailored suit or two will get you through your work week just fine. What’s nice about a suit is that you can rewear it several times without needing to wash it or without being dubbed an “outfit repeater,” if you will. If you have a few suits that you are able to alternate throughout the week, all the better.

Again, if shopping for suits, or just a suit jacket, stick to the neutral colors: black, brown, navy, and gray. If you have jackets that are neutral, you will have a much easier time matching shirts and ties to the jacket!

Unfortunately, if you are not required to wear a suit or a jacket to work, it is a bit more difficult to reuse the same dress shirt several times a week. In fact, it isn’t really recommended. Luckily for you, dress shirts oftentimes are made in a lot of different colors and fun patterns. However, if you are scared by the idea of wearing prints, read on to find out how you can best style them!

Another great thing about neutrals is that clothing brands will make a specific style of pants in several colors. This is a great way to have consistency throughout your wardrobe! So, if you have a certain type of pants that you like, go ahead and purchase several pairs of them in different colors like black, navy, gray, and khaki. That way, you have the comfort of your favorite pair of pants, along with any outfit you put together!

For Women: The basics aren’t quite as straightforward for women as they are for men, as there are so many more options! Starting with pantsuits, they often come in a large variety of colors. While they do come in the classic neutral colors, they also come in vibrant blues, pinks, and reds.  So, while these fun colors may not be basic, the style of the pantsuit is. By choosing fun and vibrant colors, you are able to add a lot of your personality and style into it!

For other pieces such as tops, pants, sweaters, and skirts, it is always a good idea to buy them in neutral colors so that you can style them with several other pieces. That way, you can get several outfits out of one item! For example, a white blouse could pair nicely with black pants, a gray skirt, or a blue pantsuit.

Young adult woman establishes her unique fashion sense with a fun patterned suit.
A bold pattern can really help you to stand out and make you look fashion forward with minimal effort!

Add a Pop with Patterns

Polka dots, stripes, and plaid, oh my!

When thinking about patterns, many people will immediately jump to the bold and outrageous patterns. However, polka dots, stripes, and plaid also constitute as patterns, and they are quite simple to style. However, if you want to go for brighter colors and fun prints, bold patterns really aren’t that difficult to style!

For Men: There aren’t as many ways to incorporate patterns for men, given the limited number of garments that are available. However, it is still very possible. For suits, there are a lot of sharp looking suits that are striped or plaid. These patterns can add a little bit of uniqueness to a very common look!

However, where the fun really comes in with patterns for men is with ties. Of course, that is if you wear ties to work. Otherwise, it may be a style you can only pull out for special occasions. If you have a solid look comprised of neutrals, you can complete the look with almost any crazy pattern or colored tie!

For Women: There are so many fun patterns out there on blouses, skirts, jackets, you name it! While you may be able to quickly find a piece with a bold pattern and fall in love with it, it may take a little longer to find a way to actually style that piece. Thankfully, you can go back to basics, even when pulling off a fun, bold pattern! By pairing patterns with neutral colors, they will stand out, while still looking stylish. Even better, it adds a bit of you!

If you want to go the extra mile styling bold patterns, you can pull a color out of the pattern and use it to style your accessories. For example, if you are wearing a blouse with a red, blue, and a little bit of yellow, you can wear yellow shoes, a yellow necklace, or a yellow purse to really make that understated color pop!

If you are still unsure if you can pull off a pattern, the easiest way for women to style a bold pattern is with a dress! With a dress, you don’t have to worry about pants that will go with, or a top to match. Simply put on the dress, add shoes and some accessories and you’re golden! Props to you if you take advantage of the previous tip of pulling a color out of a bold pattern when picking what color shoes and accessories!

Young adult establishes his unique fashion sense with a fun pocket square and a bandana.
Accessories can help a standard outfit stand out with a touch of pattern from a bandana to a pocket square!

A Touch of You in Accessories

The most crucial part of making a look more you!

While the actual clothes that you are wearing are a major part of your style, there is only so much of you that you can put into it. There are only so many cuts to a t-shirt, jacket, or pair of pants. Where you can really personalize your look and style is with how you accessorize.

For Men: There aren’t too many ways that men are able to accessorize, so you have to take advantage of the options that are available to you! To begin with, the most prominent accessory for men is the tie, and in relation, the bow tie. As previously mentioned, ties are where you can really have fun with colors and patterns. If there’s a specific pattern or color that speaks to you, you should go for it!

Other ways to add yourself into your accessories are with fun patterns with pocket squares and socks. Don’t forget about jewelry like watches and rings. These types of accessories are often more clean and professional. Of course, these are just a few statement accessories that you can choose from!

For Women: Accessories are where a lot of fun can happen for women. Adding the final touches to a look that will give it an extra touch of you! One very fun way to add your personality to any outfit is with a necklace. While you can do a big, chunky statement necklace, you can also opt for a more clean and simple necklace in gold, silver, or rose gold that will go with any outfit!

Don’t forget about other types of jewelry as well, from bracelets to rings to earrings, they can all add an extra bit of you to any outfit! You also have to take advantage of hand bags, purses, and clutches. The bag that you carry with an outfit says more about the outfit than the outfit itself! And yes, even though shoes are technically a part of your outfit, they can still play a key role in adding yourself to your outfit! Of course, these are just a few statement accessories that you can add yourself into!

As you begin to find your own unique fashion sense, don’t forget to check in on the current trends and styles. It can be as easy as going to your favorite store’s website and seeing what new styles they have each season. Never shy away from trying new things, it doesn’t have to be scary for you!

May 3, 2021