Wear This To Work: Trousers, White Ankle Boots, and Cozy Knits


Post-holiday, there was a slew of back-to-work themed emails from Net-a-Porter, Shopbop, etc that came into my inbox, and one of them, in particular, caught my eye.  I think it was from a Net-a-Porter editor.  She maintained that her M-F winter work uniform consisted of pointy-toe booties, trousers, and a chunky knit sweater.  There was something about this combo that I loved – interesting, yet accessible, maybe –  but I wanted to add my own personal twist.

So I took the chunky knit + trouser pairing and added some white booties.  I especially like the white boots with pinstriped trousers (and I’m still crushing hard on white booties with black and tan)….but I think this outfit totally works for work.

Outfit Details

sweaterFree People (size XS for reference) –  I love the swingy shape of this sweater, and it’s perfect for layering,  but it is a little scratchy if you tried to wear it alone.


pants: LOFT size 2 petite (if you want a higher-waist, this pair from Express might work)

bag: old, similar (similar in shape only….having trouble finding a good black and tan one – anyone else come across one?)

boots: Dolce Vita (at Amazon)- they’re also on sale at Bloomies.  Or….try this pair by Rebecca Minkoff – delicate studding on the boot shaft, not the heel (also on sale).

Shop Cozy Knits


Get Yo’ White Bootie On

I know I keep harping on white booties….but my gut is telling me that this trend will be around for a while.  If you make one purchase this Spring….THESE.




  1. I’ve been trying to get on board with the white booties ever since you first mentioned them. Just….can’t. I love the idea of this outfit:)

  2. I just don’t understand the white bootie. Can’t get on board. I love you but it seems to chop off your ankle at a super unflattering point. I’ll stick to my white Chucks

  3. I love this look!!! I grabbed a pair of white sock boots thinking I would wear them EVERYDAY and was able to wear them….. maybe twice. I did get a ton of compliments but Im having a tough time finding the RIGHT way to wear them (the fact that theyre not super comfortable hasnt pushed me to try more often). Perhaps I just bought the wrong pair?. The pair I have are pointy and stretch knit, very much SOCK boots. They LOOK cute but this is one trend that looks easier to pull off than it actually is- I find myself here looking for inspo quite often.

  4. I think the proportions are off. Too much fabric/bulk and unstructured pant – it looks sloppy to me. A crisper pant, maybe hitting the ankle, with a more structured knit. I like the idea of a white boot, but a pointier toe and sleeker heel would work much better here.

    • I agree with this. I can also see that sweater with dark skinnies or flares for casual friday.

      The Madewell options are homeruns, though, but only with a more structured bottom.

      I like the bag, but wouldn’t fit for my job. We carry our laptops back and forth depending on schedules (post idea! work bags, esp options that can fit work shoes vs walk-to-metro shoes and options for laptops)

    • I agree. This kinda says homeless person to me. And usually I think Shana is spot on. Maybe you all need a mother that works out of the home and is familiar with current office trends to join the TME team?

      • Yes, my guess is that it’s out of the TME zone. That’s kind of been my push-pull with TME. I’m a long time reader and working mom (in & out of the house), but my kids are older now (13+) and my life is more how it used to be pre-kids. I wear heels, not sneakers. A real handbag, not a backpack/diaper bag and never, ever half-tuck. But my sense is that TME has new readers all the time that are new moms or with younger kids, etc. (Not a dig in any way! Every blog has a niche and that’s just fine!)

        But yep, would be cool to get a working-office viewpoint.

        • I worked in a fairly conservative office for 15 years, and I’d happily wear this outfit then AND now. The fact that it has a relaxed vibe (while still being professional) is exactly why I like it. There’s always room for personal style to be expressed. On that note…..if you guys have something to say about office style, please send in pics! We’re always looking for new ideas. Seriously.

          • Just to clarify – I didn’t write that it was inappropriate per se. I didn’t care for the proportions. Relaxed is one thing, sloppy-ish is another. Tomato Tomatoe

          • A conservative office usually is understood to be one that requires heels with a skirt or dress or very suit/dress pants only. If the office is flexible on these rules … it’s not conservative. By definition.

            It’s really fun to see the different work outfits you come up with! But they’re not appropriate for anything but a casual, relaxed office. I feel like readers try to explain this over and over and get scolded every time. This outfit is not in ANY way conservative, or even “fairly conservative”.

  5. I work in tech, in Silicon Valley, and in my current job it’s pretty refreshing that I can even wear lightly, fashionably distressed jeans and no one cares. I mean, some people put on their workout clothes… have a meeting, and then go for a run. It’s cool. My previous position was close, but not quite as laidback, but Shana is dead-on. This is absolutely a work outfit… at least, here in California. I’ve only been reading TME for a year or so, but I have gotten tons of great ideas and have upped my game. I mean, I wore denim + denim, y’all! I rocked it! Still can’t get behind the white booties, but you know what… it’s cool! Fashion is whatever you feel good in!

    • Agree. I have 4 kids and have always worked outside the home. I’m a physician in the Midwest, and this outfit would be completely acceptable at my work. I don’t particularly care for the look (and 99% of the time I adore every outfit Shana styles), but that is just my personal taste. I very much enjoyed the post, however. The white boots are so cool! Just not my taste.

  6. Wow. What the f&$@ is your problem? This is a fashion blog. If you don’t like it, don‘t read it. No need to be disparaging and tear people down.

  7. I’m pretty sure that they are making enough money for this to qualify as a “real job”, lol. Here’s to intelligent, creative moms working hard to figure out that elusive work/life balance!

  8. I agree with others who don’t love this. The whole thing sort of reads like you didn’t know what to do. And whatever is on the back of the white boots especially throws it off. Is it Vegas, punk rock? I don’t know what it’s trying to add to the white boots but it definitely isn’t working.

  9. 1) I am SO grateful for TME helping keep me tuned in to what pieces and styles are trending. It has been a valuable resource and Shana, I am appreciative of how you have been able to be an early adopter of trends and yet present them in an accessible way. Thank you!
    2) My first impression of this outfit is that it’s out of my comfort zone, but I have a feeling that the look will continue to grow on me. The white boots were a stretch for me when they first showed up a few months ago, but I’m definitely warming to them. The pin stripes are giving me flashbacks of some pieces I wore in high school in the 90’s and making me feel old but they’re all over the most recent Express mailer, so it looks like they’re back in a widespread way!
    3) The continued recycling of 90’s trends really taps into the hoarder in me and makes it harder to clean out and let go of items. Causes me to think hard about what I own that will one day be coveted “vintage” pieces for my daughter to enjoy and what I can let go of with peace. Do y’all have thoughts on that one?

  10. S–help on a style challenge!! Recently started a part time position where no blue jeans allowed—GULP, and nothing sleeveless. My go tos are –jeans and blazers, jeans and blouses, jeans and boots….yada yada yada. I don’t mind taking my gear up a notch for work–I’ve been going with dress pants and boots or high heel, but don’t want to have to leave the office to do the kid shuttle and wait at the sports practices, etc. in my dressy office garb every day. Need ideas for the in-between wardrobe similar to this one that allows for a cool, classy, chic office vibe that is actually comfortable. HELP a girl out?!

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