Refresh Your Workwear for 2021 – the Key Pieces You Need

navy tweed dress that is a dupe for chanel tweed dress in blog post about marks spencer workwear

This blog post is a paid for advertorial in collaboration with Marks & Spencer.
Items that were received as PR product are marked with an asterisk * 
Read the disclaimer about affiliate links & PR products here

Can you believe that we’ve almost clocked in twelve months of living through a pandemic?! At this point in time, I don’t blame you if you’re a little… well, over it.  You might be sick of your home office and your work-from-home uniform and need to shake things up.  Or, if you’re in a city that is starting to (hopefully safely) open up again, you might want to give your wardrobe a bit of tweak.  I totally get it! 

So in today’s post, I’m going to share with you some key pieces from Marks & Spencer’s new collection and the ways to style them for work, whether it be for the office or if you’re in need of a WFH refresh.  Right now, you can get 25% off all items (excluding sleepwear) if you buy four items or more. The promotion is only running until 11am this Sunday 15 February so now’s as good a time as any to give your workwear a refresh for another working year!

For dressing from the neck up

Hello from videoconference-mode me in my cute Marks & Spencer blazer!

Many of us are still Zooming (or Microsoft Teams-ing in my case) into work meetings every day, and if you’re currently sweltering through summer right now, you’re probably wondering if jackets are even necessary.  Personally, I love the ease of throwing a tailored jacket over whatever it is I’m wearing before hopping onto a video call. It’s the easiest way to look and feel put together.  And I love this lighter blazer for its versatility – the navy check really brightens up my work day.  It also works as a great transition piece moving into the autumn and paired with some tailored trousers and a silk blouse, as I’ve styled below with the matching slim cut trousers.  

checked trouser suit in blog post about marks spencer workwear favourites

Marks & Spencer blazer* (sz 8), Marks & Spencer tailored trousers* (sz 10 in short length), Celine bag (review here), Nicholas Kirkwood flats, Ray Ban sunglasses

When it comes to suits and tailoring, Marks & Spencer have a tonne of options available.  The workwear section of their website is a treasure trove of accessible pieces and is constantly updated with chic options if you need a refresh.  And despite their high street price tags, the quality of their pieces goes far beyond.  Indeed it was only last year that the Duchess of Cambridge sported her M&S suit when delivering her keynote speech for The Royal Foundation’s Forum on the Early Years as well as during her visit to the London Ambulance Service control room in March. 

Marks & Spencer blazer* (sz 8), Marks & Spencer tailored trousers* (sz 10 in short length), Celine bag (review here), Nicholas Kirkwood flats, Ray Ban sunglasses

As for sizing, I opted for my usual size 8 in the blazer but I sized up in the slim cut trousers to a size 10 as I’m pear-shaped and wanted the trousers to be more of a relaxed fit. I ordered the trousers in the ‘short’ length (another plus when shopping with M&S as they have different lengths on offer) and I’ve cuffed them up once to make them look more cropped given I’m wearing flats. I’d otherwise leave them as is when wearing them with heels.

For heading back in

While you might not find yourself heading back into the office five days a week, like me, you might be easing yourself back in with a day or two a week and ducking in for a meeting here and there.  For my fellow office workers, it’s been nearly a year since many of you set foot into air conditioning and had to wear proper shoes so I’m sure there’s more than a touch of apprehension about returning to office work and our old ways. 

These are the times to rely on the ‘one-and-done’ pieces – simple and chic options so you can focus your attention on more important things… like brushing up on your small-talk skills when visiting the staff kitchen (because no doubt they’re a little rusty!). 

Marks & Spencer dress* (sz 8), Dior slingbacks, Celine bag (review here), Ray Ban sunglasses

Is there anything chicer than a classic tweed piece?  Whether it’s a cropped jacket, a buttoned cardigan or a charming dress, the textured fabric is undoubtedly a symbol of style thanks largely of course to Chanel.  Not everyone can afford to put down major bucks on an iconic Chanel dress.  Thankfully, there are some accessible options that are modern, sophisticated and exude a Chanel-esque elegance.  Take this navy tweed dress – a wonderfully timeless piece, exquisitely cut and it’s only $129. Considering Chanel tweed dresses carry price tags of upwards of $10,000, this dress is unbelievable value and just as sophisticated. Having worn it a couple of times this week already (including for a WFH day filled with video calls as you can see below), I can vouch for the fact that it looks and feels expensive. It also comes in a navy/pink mix and there’s a lovely matching jacket as well.

marks spencer workwear favourites for working from home

Giving off Chanel-vibes in my tweed Marks & Spencer dress for a WFH morning of video calls

For another ‘one-and-done’ dress option, I’m loving the micro-trend of collars, and the sweet Peter Pan collar on this dress is no exception. This cute little number of a dress is one that works for the office as well as a playful addition to your occasion-wear.  I can also see myself pairing this dress with sneakers on the weekend to offset the prim and proper nature of the collar. 

Marks & Spencer dress* (sz 10), Gianvito Rossi pumps, Senreve bag* (use ‘WHATVEEWORE’ for $50 USD off purchases over $300 USD), Ray Ban sunglasses

The reviews of this dress were quite amusing to read – as the dress seemed to come up small for some, so I took the advice of the reviews and sized up to a size 10 and it has worked a treat.  That said, I do find the dress comes up true to size, so my usual size 8 would have been fine too.

For somewhere in between

And if you still don’t know exactly when you’re going back to the office but want to find some motivation in the meantime, these performance cuffed joggers might be your best bet – they’re the perfect balance of comfort and polish to tackle the day. 

marks & spencer workwear favourites in blog post

Marks & Spencer blazer* (sz 8), Marks & Spencer joggers* (sz 8)

While I’ve been working from home in my leggings in recent times (and in an effort to stay active during my breaks – new year, new me 🤘), these joggers have been a game changer. They’re essentially activewear pants (with the benefit of the breathable and lightweight material) but they’re cut like slim fit trousers. The overwhelmingly positive reviews on the item page are completely warranted. I’m hooked. More colours pleeeeease.

I hope I’ve inspired you to refresh your workwear at whatever stage you find yourself – whether it be a return to office work or continuing to work from home.

Thanks for stopping by!

P.S. My tips for making your first designer purchase and my top tips for caring for your handbags.


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