Ladies Fashion In The Workplace
Fashion in the workplace is a serious issue, especially when it comes to working with children. It’s also not just a concern for nannies. School teachers, childcare workers, and healthcare professionals must all consider their attire before leaving the house. Why? Because, as with most jobs, the clothing has to fit the demands. However, unlike most other jobs that place emphasis on the professionalism of the put-together ladies fashion attire, if you’re working with kids you must also consider the practicality. Simply put, kids are messy and clothes get dirty and ruined.
I was talking with a friend recently (she’s also a nanny and the owner of this nanny agency). It was a freezing cold winter day and so we agreed that it was a puffa jacket and converse kind of day. Which when you think about it, is something pretty special. Because there are very few jobs where you can get away with turning up at work in tracksuits, or gym clothes, or lazy oversized pullovers.
The general rules for your attire when working as a nanny can be pretty fickle. Gumboots, sloppy joes, and warm winter tights are all fine but heels aren’t? Yes you can wear gym clothes but a plain tank top is not advised? Confused? Actually, it’s pretty simple.
| “Dress for comfort, dress for practicality, dress for the weather, dress to show your employers that you know what you’re doing and to show your kids that you mean business.”
Whilst in some cases it may be appropriate for nannies to wear gym clothes to work, there are times where it may not always be the best choice. You should consider your surroundings, the wishes of your employers, the planned activities for the day and the demands of the job.
For example, I used to work with boys (full-on active boys aged seven and four years of age). Given they were highly active kids, most of the time I could get away with gym clothes. Almost every afternoon we were at a different sporting activity and if we were at home, you could find us kicking a ball around in the backyard or playing ‘stacks on’. Gym clothes allowed me the freedom to jump in and join the boys in their activities to be hands-on; an essential part of being a nanny.
On the other hand, some situations might give you the freedom to wear a more ‘put together’ outfit. For example, you may work with girls that are more at home doing craft activities and DIY indoors. In this case, you’re likely to be safe with a professional ensemble of jeans and a crisp shirt.
In your nanny career, when considering ladies fashion and professionalism, there are a few key points to remember when putting together your nanny outfit.
The Professional Nanny: Things To Remember When Styling Your Outfit
be professional at all times | whilst you might be able to get away with wearing tights or gym pants at work, make sure you still look presentable. This means no offensive language printed on clothing materials, no visible body art or tattoos and no visible inappropriate body piercings. Key Point: be sure to limit your makeup. Instead keep it light, minimal and fresh!
dress appropriately | it’s important to take into account the nature of your work. This means if you’re working with kids (boys or girls, active or not) ensure your clothing suits the demands. Light summer dresses and skirts must be modest and your cleavage should be hidden at all times. If you think you might find yourself in a situation that prevents your from participating because of your fashion choices, don’t wear it!
consider your surroundings | as fashionable and stylish as you may be, we all have those days when we want to go to as little effort as possible with our appearance. But if you know you’re set for a day of parent teacher interviews at school or a day of running important errands, it’s best to leave the sweat pants for another time and instead dress in smart casual attire.
the children’s ages | kids are messy and dirty, especially babies and toddlers. As I mentioned in The Nanny Life (5 Things About My Job), they sneeze on you, wipe their snotty noses all over you, they get dirty and it seems like they’re always covered in food. Whether you’re simply carrying kids around, or in the direct line of fire from a baby having a food tantrum, at some point you’re likely to wear it. Just as most other professions have a work wardrobe and causal wardrobe, should too should you. Leave your sunday best for Sunday!
accessories | as always, minimal and modest is best. Whilst it’s important to teach children about how to treat personal belongings and to look after special items, dangly earrings and over the top jewellery are not great accessories for life working with kids.
The key points: make sure your clothes are practical and appropriate at all times & be prepared for your clothes to be ruined, stained, ripped, and stretched out of shape.
What’s your take on ladies fashion in the workplace? Have you ever had a favourite clothing item ruined beyond repair at the hands of your littles?
images from Seed Heritage. this is not a sponsored post, I just think that currently, Seed gets the balance right between practicality and professionalism**