SM Makati: Shifting Workwear


A lot of people think that my wardrobe is bottomless, but I actually repeat clothes a lot. I’ve always found it practical to invest in classic pieces that work for my body type. If they fit perfectly, I’m definitely wearing them again. If I find a certain style that is versatile enough to go from day to night, I’m definitely buying it.

This is why I have a ton of shift dresses in my closet! Move over, bodycon dresses, because shift dresses are much more comfortable and sophisticated. They’re great for work too! I usually wear shift dresses to my meetings because they automatically make me look decent and professional. (The last thing you want to do in a professional setting is distract people with unnecessary skin exposure!)

But what *can* you do to modify a knee-length shift dress? I love wearing shift dresses as is, but different occasions call for different styling. These kinds of work dresses need not always be boring, since there are various ways to make them more exciting:


Use a belt to shorten your dress to your desired length.

This is a technique that I often use for all my good but awkward length dresses. I’m just average height (I’m only 5’3″ without heels!) with a short torso-longer legs proportion, so I always play with proportions, and try to elongate my figure by showing off my legs. (This explains all my leg-baring OOTDs!)


Use a belt to define your waist.

This creates the illusion of a curvier figure, and also acts like an additional accessory to the whole outfit. I chose a skinny black belt with a gold buckle to match my favorite gold jewelry.

Choosing the best belt for your body type is important, unless looking frumpy doesn’t bother you at all. If you’re petite or pear-shaped, go for skinny belts that won’t overwhelm your frame. If you’ve got an hourglass figure, make sure your belt emphasizes the tiniest part of your waist (don’t go for the ones that rest at the hip). If you have a long torso, you can get away with wide belts.


Wear a blazer over your belted dress, and match it with boots/booties.

Perfect way to make your work dress go from day-to-night. Choose a non-black blazer to make your outfit pop, and skip the office pumps for edgier shoes!


Wear a knit top/sweater over your dress, and accessorize with a statement necklace.

It was only recently that I appreciated layering over dresses! I love how my skirt collection seems like it has somewhat doubled, now that I can make my dresses look like skirts too! Best to go for cropped sweaters and knits to balance out the length of the shift dress.

Also, statement necklaces are always your best friend.

The bag (SM Parisian) and dress (from SM Woman) are available at The SM Store in SM Makati. You might also want to check out the sleeveless version of this dress, as well as the rack of SM Accessories where I got the statement necklace in my last photo.

Have fun shopping!

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