Working girl: this season the culture of power dressing is back but not quite as we know it
The power suit is back but this season, the formality of the office has been scrapped in favour of brash colours and awkward, off-key proportions. Almost conservative by definition, the suit has, to some degree, been exclusively reserved to the boardroom – until now that is. As the spring collections came down the runway it was clear that designers were ready to ditch timeworn conventions of stuffy shoulder pads and a male dominated workplace, instead borrowing from the boys with statement making two-pieces. Power dressing is intrinsically linked to a specific look but for this season designers proved that there’s so much more to the suit than the parody of an 80s executive.
Marc Jacobs Spring/ Summer 2016
Bold is an understatement when it comes to the way suits are looking nowadays with stark prints and silky, Seventies-style silhouettes unravelling this fusty cornerstone for the modern woman. For his second ready-to-wear collection at Gucci, Alessandro Michele elected geek-chic and 1970s Italy as his muse – a time when women were breaking into traditionally male roles at a rate never seen before; fitting. Amped up colour and solid Gucci accessory references saw floral jacquard suits cast in Kelly-green shine and floral embroidery but they weren’t the only ones getting eclectic. While Roberto Cavalli opted for animal print and metallic brocade Marc Jacobs looked to a patriotic display of Americana. From 40s-inspired sailor suits inflated by sequined swans to a boxy double breasted two–piece in red, every ensemble was perfectly tailored and wildly reimagined.
Gucci Spring/ Summer 2016
While this look is sprightly, in all likelihood it’s probably not destined for the conservative business world but choosing bright colours or prints will nonetheless instantly update your look; just approach with caution. Perfect for all seasons and super-versatile, the bold power suit promises take you from the boardroom to the bar and thankfully this fresher take means starchy shirts are out of the equation. Instead, pair with a t-shirt and tuck in a little at the front for instantly effortless style. Don’t be afraid to experiment with this trend too and be sure to trial different trouser lengths and mix-up your footwear; from class courts to tennis shoes. No matter what option you choose, one thing’s for sure is that staying chic in the office has never been so easy.