Building a Work from Home Wardrobe

This post is sponsored by Soma.

building a work from home wardrobe photo of Alison Gary in Soma Style Essentials blazer and tank and ponte pants

One of the most requested topics for Wardrobe Oxygen is advice on what to wear when working from home. Whether it’s as a telecommuter, a busy stay at home mom, or an active retiree, there are three aspects necessary for a great work from home wardrobe: comfort, washability, and polish. Pieces need to feel great, but they also need to look pulled together for a video conference call, coffee meeting, or when running errands. The clothes need to look polished, but also be able to be thrown in the washer and dryer (and not need to be ironed). That’s a pretty big ask of a wardrobe, but not impossible. In fact, I found all three in Soma’s new Style Essentials collection. This collection is full of machine washable knits that feel good and also look good.

If you’ve read this blog for a bit you know ponte is one of my favorite fabrics. A heavyweight dense knit, ponte looks polished and even professional while being as comfy as your favorite yoga pants. Therefore, you know I was psyched to try Soma’s Smoothing Ponte Pants. The fabric is dense enough that you can wear them to the office or out and about with a shorter sweater or top. They have slanted zipper pockets large enough to hold your keys and phone, and center seams down the front and back which make them look more like trousers while also slimming your legs.

building a work from home wardrobe photo of Alison Gary in Soma Style Essentials blazer and tank and ponte pants building a work from home wardrobe photo of Alison Gary in Soma Style Essentials blazer and tank and ponte pants

Jacket: Knit Blazer c/o Soma (L) | Top: Soft Jersey Easy Tank c/o Soma (L) | Pants: Smoothing Ponte Pant c/o Soma (26” short, size Large) | Earrings: Jenny Bird | Shoes: Rothy’s The Point

This look could be worn to the office or to a meeting with a client but be comfy enough to chill in the rest of the day. The knit blazer is heavy enough to have structure but soft enough to feel like a hoodie. The sleeves are without buttons at the bottom so you can easily roll or push them up. The pockets are deep enough to carry all of your essentials. Below is the Soft Jersey Easy Tank. With a subtle sheen that makes it look more formal than a traditional knit top, this tank is double lined for opacity and has straps wide enough to cover your bra. It drapes beautifully so you can tuck it in like I did here or wear it loose.

The key to keeping work at home outfits from looking like loungewear is the addition of accessories. Adding a pair of bold earrings or a statement necklace elevates the look. Keep such an accessory in your bag or next to your webcam to throw on when heading out of the house or popping on to a video call.

Wardrobe Oxygen in Soma Style Essentials collection which is perfect for building a work from home wardrobe Wardrobe Oxygen in Soma Style Essentials collection which is perfect for building a work from home wardrobe

Top: Soft Jersey Long Sleeve Yoke Tunic c/o Soma (L) | Pants: Smoothing Ponte Pant c/o Soma (26” short, size Large) | Scarf: Reversible Jacquard Infinity Scarf c/o Soma | Earrings: Jenny Bird | Booties: L’Amour Des Pieds (similar) | Bag: Dagne Dover

This outfit features the same Smoothing Ponte Pants, but this time with the Soft Jersey Long Sleeve Yoke Tunic in Oceanside Stripe Black. Unlike a traditional t-shirt, this tunic has gorgeous drape and the yoke keeps it from looking too boxy.

Again, accessories are key. This washable infinity scarf adds interest with the pattern mixing and also elevates the look from loungewear to streetwear. It’s also a stylish way to ward off a chill in overly-air conditioned workspaces and coffee shops.

Wardrobe Oxygen showcasing work from home fashion featuring the Soma Style Essentials collection cardigan, dolman top, and essential crop leggings Wardrobe Oxygen showcasing work from home fashion featuring the Soma Style Essentials collection cardigan, dolman top, and essential crop leggings

Top: Dolman Sleeve Top c/o Soma (L) | Leggings: Essential Crop Legging c/o Soma (L) | Waterfall Cardigan: Long Black Wrap c/o Soma (L) | Necklace: Chico's  | Shoes: Rothy’s The Point

Layering is a great way to be comfortable into fall when the temps drop, but it’s also a great way to look more polished. This waterfall cardigan is long enough to dress up leggings, but not so long it looks like a blanket. It has pockets and is a quite flattering shape. Another way to add polish to your work from home wardrobe is to add color. This blue shade is flattering on most skin tones and coordinates with neutrals so beautifully. The cut and stitching of this top are so flattering and I think also slimming; the fabric feels and looks so luxe yet can be tossed into the washing machine.

Again, an accessory can take your work from home wardrobe to the next level. I got this necklace in the summer and am surprised by how many times I reach for it. Such a bold piece can dress up even a simple t-shirt and jeans or your favorite loungewear.

The basics of a work from home wardrobe:

  • Two pairs of pants, each in a different color and/or silhouette
  • Three knit tops, at least one a color or classic print (stripes are always chic)
  • Two layering pieces, each in a different silhouette
  • Slip-on shoes waiting at the door (I recommend a style that has a pointed or almond toe which looks more polished and professional than a sneaker or ballet flat). One pair for winter (a Chelsea boot is a good choice), one for warmer months
  • Two or three statement accessories (necklaces, scarves, or earrings) to glam up casual pieces
  • A structured tote or laptop bag that adds professionalism to your ensemble
  • Optional: One or two dresses that can look polished with the addition of one of your layering pieces

You don’t need a lot of pieces to build a hardworking, cohesive, and stylish wardrobe for your active home-based lifestyle. And with pieces from Soma’s Style Essentials collection, these pieces can be polished, comfortable, and easy care. Thank you Soma for partnering with me on this post.

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10 Comments

  1. April
    February 5, 2019 / 2:50 pm

    I made the switch from office to self-employed last year and am struggling with this very issue. The problem is I’m allergic to spandex and black dye. Any suggestions?

    • February 5, 2019 / 3:12 pm

      I’d say work with what you have. No need for a completely different wardrobe you can take some things like tops from your office life and pair with bottoms you wear on the weekends!

  2. Karin
    September 5, 2018 / 8:10 pm

    I had no idea Soma sold clothes! These also look like they’d be a great basis of a travel wardrobe.

  3. Karen
    September 5, 2018 / 1:45 pm

    You look comfortable but polished. Although I don’t work from home right now, I do like to put a little effort in on the weekends. Now that I’m older I find ratty sweats and tee shirts only serve to make me look ill or like I’ve given up on life. The big shocker for me is Soma sells pieces like this? I guess I’m out of the loop as I thought they did bras and underwear. I’m going to check out your link now.

    • September 7, 2018 / 5:00 pm

      It has never been their primary focus, but I think this is a very smart addition to their collection!

  4. patval
    September 5, 2018 / 9:35 am

    Soma’s clothes are so comfortable. I have worn them for years. They use to make yoga clothes that were great. Soma for awhile focused on dresses not pants and tops. I stopped shopping there because I rarely wear dresses. I am glad they are bringing back apparel. You look nice in your outfits. This is my style of everyday dressing.

  5. Grace
    September 5, 2018 / 9:34 am

    While these pieces don’t really seem like your usual style, I really appreciate seeing them, because I think that they are actually one of the most practical things I’ve ever seen you showcase. Not only for work-at-home folks, but in my field, Early Childhood, many professionals need to be able to move seamlessly from meetings with potential clients parents or state officials Etc, to getting on the floor and interacting with children. I am definitely going to give Soma a look, do their pieces come in a wide range of sizes?

    • September 5, 2018 / 10:19 am

      I was excited to share this collection because it is what so many of you look for. And they feel and wear so well I’ve been wearing them a lot at home (and the blue top and cropped leggings were worn out last week to run a few errands and get a manicure!). As for sizing, they go up to XXL or 16 and I find the sizing generous/relaxed. While I got a L in most pieces, some I think I could have worn in a M. Items do not shrink when washed (and someone asked on Facebook about the dryer, and everything I’m wearing here can go in the dryer except the blazer).

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