I have talked about this before, but I find dressing casually to be very challenging. The type of casual dress that I am referring to is less “casual Friday” and more “weekend casual.” I generally pass on the casual Friday celebration as where I work is casual every day. However, if I wanted to participate, I get it, replace my chinos with denim, and done. Weekend casual is describes more casual events such as early morning coffee trips, grocery runs, and yes even trips to Target. One of my main problems with weekend casual is that I like to transition my work clothes to the weekend wear when they have seen better days which can leave me a little overdressed. With that being said, I do not like to purchase clothes exclusively for the casual cause, but sometimes you to give a little.
I purchased a shawl collar fleece cardigan at the Ralph Lauren Polo outlet ($29.99) for this “weekend casual.” I was actually looking for a cardigan to wear to work when I stopped to take a closer look at this sweater. I was drawn in by, well the navy color of course, but more so the shawl collar and patch pockets. I like shawl collars as they add a touch of sophistication and I don’t like cardigans without pockets. After examining the sweater I realized that it was made of fleece. I was about to pass up on it as fleece as it is a little casual for work wear and then it hit me. This would make a great piece for the weekend.
This cardigan has already shown itself to be a useful purchase. It looks great over a button-down sports shirt, but even better it can dress-up a t-shirt, and this is where I had my break through. What works about this item is the juxtaposition of style and material. The fleece material dresses down the shawl collar cardigan while the shawl collar cardigan design adds a touch of sophistication to the most casual of outfits. I am now one step closer to understanding how to be casual and still be myself.