How to re-purpose corporate clothes

Once upon a time there lived a woman. She worked in a fairy-tale land know as the “city”. Everyday she would put on her corporate clothes and head into the city. The people would bustle with self-importance and she would bustle along with them in her high, high heels. In the city she was able to drink hot coffee and have long conversations with adults.

Then the woman had children. Her wardrobe full of suits, pencil skirts, sharply-cut jackets, tailored shirts and cute blouses languished. Instead, she donned jeans and shorts and clothes suitable for playing with two young boys. Then the woman realised, she could still wear so many of her corporate things in her new life. She just had to put a different spin on them. Alas, the woman has yet to figure to how to drink her coffee hot or have long and meaningful conversations with her two year old (that aren’t entirely one-sided).

how to turn you corporate wardrobe into a casual one

Do you have a wardrobe full of corporate clothes that no longer suit your lifestyle? Don’t ditch them just yet. There are plenty of ways to twist your previous work wardrobe into more casual options.

Here are a few ideas on how you can re-purpose corporate clothes …

  1. Throw a t-shirt over a work dress
    Popping a t-shirt over a more formal dress tones it right down and opens up more casual dressing.
    t-shirt over work dress
  2. The tops you wore under suits can work with shorts
    Sometimes you just need a casual co-worker to bring things down a notch (and elevate shorts at the same time). 6
  3. Suit jackets can look sporty and cute with pushed up sleeves and worn with something a bit preppy. 
    By keeping your kicks casual, you can tone done the corporate vibe.
  4. That black pencil skirt can work double duty as evening wear.
    Paired with something sparkly and some killer shoes, your humble pencil skirt can be a viable evening option. You know for all of those date nights (see fairy-tale above).
  5. Wrap your tailored shirting, push up the sleeves and you have a cute option to wear with shorts.
    This works equally well with a man’s shirt – which will be larger and allow for a more exaggerated wrap.
    Arrow 3


Have a play in your own wardrobe and see what you can re-purpose to a more casual vibe. If there are things that you really aren’t going to wear again and they are still in great condition, why not donate them to dressed for success? Your old corporate uniform could help another woman achieve economic independence. How cool is that for re-purposing?

Arrow 2

Do you have another tips for re-purposing work wear into casual wear?

33 thoughts on “How to re-purpose corporate clothes

  1. Cathy@lifetgroughthehaze says:

    Don’t do what I did which was leave it so long I threw them all out! I’m desperate for a suit that I tossed out and I still can’t believe I did! The jacket would have been perfect with jeans and the skirt perfect with a casual tshirt and flats! That said it has been nearly 10yrs since I had a business meeting so I’ve almost forgotten what that is like!

  2. Kez Unprepared says:

    Oh, this takes me back to when I first stopped working in a corporate environment! I was so frustrated that I looked like I was going to work each day, when I was really just headed to the shops to run some errands. Shop assistants kept asking me if I was on my lunch break. So awkward! I wish I had this blog post back then!
    Now that I’m a school mum, I’m not in the corporate world still (although considering it due to some financial changes), but I would like to present myself better (I look like a hot mess adult fail at the moment haha). I have been thinking of mixing some more corporate stuff with casual for the opposite-ish reason!
    Thanks for the ideas!
    Kez Unprepared recently posted…Kez Gets Physical: Time to challenge myself.My Profile

  3. Emily says:

    So clever! Love it all. You inspired me to donate my suits – which wasn’t a suggestion, but mine were all patterned so the pieces didn’t work as well individually. But even if I go back to the corporate life, the patterned suit days are done. I’m a mix’n’match girl these days. (My plain black blazer made the cut, as did my black pencil skirt. Bling’s a-coming!)
    Emily recently posted…Once Upon a Twice – Denise Doyen and Barry Moser (book review)My Profile

    • Robyna says:

      Whenever I have to go corporate for a client meeting these days, I am all about mix and match. I think it makes it so much easier to have a hard working wardrobe when the pieces can do double duty.

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  5. Hazel Owens says:

    These are some great ideas! I love how you can use a suit jacket with some preppy clothes to give a whole new look. It’s amazing how combining corporate clothes with casual items makes an entirely new look. I’ll definitely be using some of these ideas in my daily life. Thanks!

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