December 1, 2023


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Best work dresses for 2022 to refresh your wardrobe

Best work dresses for 2022 to refresh your wardrobe


hen that 7am alarm hits, the last thing you want to be thinking about is what you’re going to wear that day. The luxury of throwing on pyjamas or loungewear to WFH is over. Acceptable office attire is firmly back on the agenda. Cue the sartorial panic.

The struggle to find the perfect balance for 9-to-5 outfitting has returned, and so it comes as no surprise that there is ever-growing interest in the subject. Karen Millen alone has seen searches for work dresses increase by over 3900 per cent in just March.

Factoring in both top and bottom half is unfamiliar territory in this post-Zoom IRL work life and brings alongside it the stress of mix and matching – can you really get away with brown and black? Are jeans really okay for office meetings? Consider the work dress and you’ll only need to worry about one piece for a chic, sophisticated, boardroom-ready ensemble.

Different work places will, of course, sit on different levels of the smart-to-casual scale. For corporate jobs, black dresses will no doubt form the basis of your rotation – but that doesn’t mean it needs to be boring. Floral or polka dot prints will liven up the look while remaining professional. You need something that says ‘business’ while still being comfortable, and you don’t want to spend all day tugging at your hemline or worrying about accidental flashes. As ever with all things fashion, confidence is key.

In more creative roles, you can get away with more colourful attire, especially as spring and summer approach. Pops of green, orange and pale blue will spark joy in your daily dressing – and you’ll be ready for evening plans too.

Most importantly of all when it comes to work dressing is the amount of skin on show. You want to appear put together and covered up enough without looking too straight-laced. If you wear those ripped jeans again, you know that Steve from accounts will ask if you paid extra for the honour.

Our edit of throw-on-and-go work dresses will make your morning routine more efficient than ever and banish the ever-growing floordrobe of rejected ensembles.

Shop below

Zara dress with side gathering


From boardroom to bar, this classic midi is just the ticket for a office-appropriate overhaul to your wardrobe. It features a traditional round neckline and short sleeves – but the side gathering gives it a flattering feel. The dress comes in three shades, from the bolder orange pictured to more muted black as well as an understated forest green hue.

& Other Stories Neck Tie Mini Dress

& Other Stories

Paired with black tights, you can elevate this dress with knee-length boots and a blazer or give it an edgy feel with chunky ankle boots and a leather jacket. It has a ditsy floral pattern that gives it all year appeal as well as a chic pussy bow tie detail.

Ghost Dixie Dress Black Floral


For all your fancy frock needs, Ghost should be your first port of call. The Dixie has a lovely, unique floral design set on a flowy construction. Bringing the style points, it is adorned with a ruffle detailed collar in line with the enduring oversized trend that has taken over in the last few years.

Staud Shoko buttoned ribbed-knit dress


Fill your workwear arsenal with knit dresses like this option from Staud and you’ll be able to snooze your alarm content in the knowledge that the getting ready process will be completed in an instant. It has a colour-block design of black and brown so the styling options are endless.

& Other Stories Voluminous Mini Dress

& Other Stories

Your first challenge of the day need not be a difficult one when you have this voluminous mini dress in your bag of tricks. A longer iteration of this style was the item of the summer a couple of years back and now it’s had a revival in mini form so you’re prepared for the warmer weather.

Whistles Abby Dress


The sophisticated shirt dresses will set you on a fast track to management with its refined aesthetic. This all-black option at Whistles has a relaxed silhouette so you’ll stay cool, comfortable and confident throughout the day.

John Lewis & Partners Daisy Midi Dress, Blue

John Lewis

With smart boots or sneakers and paired with the jacket to best suit the season, you’ll be surprised just how trans-seasonal this dress from John Lewis will be. The piece comes in one of the most sought-after colours of the season – a pastel blue – and gives Rixo vibes with its combination of polka and daisy print. The puff sleeves offer added style points.

Never Fully Dressed Leopard Abigail Dress

Never Fully Dressed

This leopard dress may be a little bold for some office settings and you may need to wear a slip underneath but the silhouette and fierce print was too tempting not to include. Leopard offers a strange neutrality so you can really wear alongside just about anything – be it statement fuchsia, pared-black neutrals or Kat Slater-style with more clashing animal prints.

& Other Stories Square Neck Midi Dress

& Other Stories

This graphic print deserves to be played on office-repeat. The monochrome design gives a sophisticated edge while still providing plenty of intrigue. The square neck silhouette is eternally flattering too. Cue the compliments from your envious colleagues.

ASOS DESIGN frill neck mini dress with fluted three quarter sleeves


They say to dress for the job you want and you’ll be the CEO in no time with this mini dress from ASOS. It’s minimalistic enough to work for corporate office dress codes and yet still has subtle chic details like the ruffle trim and cinching. Wear from summer to winter with tights added.

M&S Jersey Printed Midi Waisted Dress


There’s something about polka dot prints that makes you feel more put together and this design puts a modern spin on the timeless pattern, set on a cosy jersey construction. It’s a no-brainer; simple, chic and classic black. It’s an all season performer.

Reiss Josie Knitted Flippy Dress


Break from all neutral hued associations of workwear with this bold red number that will give you the confidence you need to ask for that well-deserved pay rise. It has a sculptural design with intricate detailing on the skirt and a ribbed construction.

Whistles Nelly Ribbed Cardigan Dress


This effortless cardigan dress is one of those easy to style pieces that you will be able to create a new look every time you wear it. You’ll also easily be able to go from office hour to happy hour with the right jewellery and accessories.

Ganni Plaid organic cotton-blend seersucker shirt dress


Raise your office style stakes with an injection of Scandi chic. Ganni has this checked shirt dress that proves your work attire rotation need not be boring. It’s meeting-with-your-boss appropriate yet still has runway appeal.

Printed Puff Sleeve Midi Dress

& Other Stories

Make soft pastel hues an integral part of your office wardrobe to liven up your traditionally monotone attire. Bring on water cooler moments with the green gingham delights of this dress.

Karen Millen Forever Belted Midi Pencil Dress

Karen Millen

Be ready for any last minute client meetings with this pencil dress from Karen Millen that comes as part of the label’s Forever Dresses – and it’s clear why. This piece has a timeless design that will see you through job after job, while bringing effortless elegance. You’ll go from intern to boss in no time.

Norma Kamali Tie-waist jersey dress

Norma Kamali

Put a luxe twist on your 9 to 5 uniform with this jersey dress that is the optimal balance of smart-casual workwear. Norma Kamali has designed this piece to bring a laidback feel to your formal dressing needs with all the sophistication you’d hope for but none of the stuffiness.

Petite Woven Midi Tea Dress In Floral


An ideal throw-on-and-go piece, Warehouse has nailed it with this floral print tea dress. It’s an elevated take on the LBD that you can wear from spring to winter, am to pm and from the office to the bar with ease.