Now that the weather is getting warmer and summer is around the corner, my lovely HR department has sent out a general memo about “Summer Office Attire”. I realize that there are numerous levels of business dress-styles, everything from “Formal Business” to “Casual”. My particular workplace abides by “Business Casual/Casual”.
Most of the people around here (execs included) seem to lean more toward “casual” as the typical outfit seems to be Jeans, running shoes and a polo shirt/T-shirt/Hoodie. Yes hoodie. Imagine meeting the Disney or Paramount Reps in running shoes and a hoodie – not my cup of tea, but luckily I don’t actually work with any important people.
Anyway, I consider myself to be fairly well dressed. Even when I do succumb to the Jeans-Runners-Hoodie uniform (which is quite often in the winter) I make sure I look nice and well put-together. I enjoy dressing up occasionally, but also want to be comfortable.
This coincides with the new “Summer Office Attire” memo. According to the policy, skirts and dresses must be no shorter than an inch and a half above the knee.
My issue is this:
I’m between 5’10 and 5’11. The same skirt would be a lot longer on someone who is say 5’5 or 5’6, so it is virtually impossible for me to find dresses and skirts that are the right length without actually being floor length. I’m not going to argue with HR about this technicality (even though I think it’s perfectly valid) because I believe I might have found a solution. Leggings. I figure with leggings I can wear shorter dresses in the summer and top them off with Capri-length leggings.
The sweater-dress I have on today is definitely nowhere near an inch and a half above my knees, it sits probably about 5 inches north of my knees. I figured this was acceptable because I’m wearing dark stretchy leggings that are actually slightly looser than some jeans I’ve worn in the past. I walked into the office this morning and my boss gave me a slightly disapproving once-over, but didn’t say anything. This has lead to paranoia on my part.
I practically live in dresses and skirts throughout the summer months, and the thought of having to resort to jeans or capris all summer long is depressing.
Do leggings count as pants? Or as panty-hose? What are your workplaces like? What do you think? Can I get away with a shorter dress and leggings?