Ask Belle: An Outfit for Meeting the CEO

May 7, 2015

Hi Belle,

Love your blog! I have this opportunity to meet the CEO of my company for lunch and dinner on same day. I don’t want to wear a suit. I am looking for a sheath and blazer/ jacket combination which is still conservative. My budget is $550. Please help me pick an outfit.

Thanks for your help. Regards, S

A dress and blazer combination is a great option because you it’s a professional choice for lunch, but you can remove the jacket for dinner.  $550 is a pretty healthy budget, so let’s see what we can come up with.

A Olivia Pope-Inspired Combination

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Limited Grey Tweed Jacket ($68) // Burberry Silk Sheath ($475) // Michael Kors Pumps ($150)

I’m in the throes of a grey obsession.  This collarless tweed jacket with a grey sheath and pumps is a classic combination that’s both feminine and sleek.  The pumps bring in a bit of texture, the dress has a pleated detail, and the marled colors in the jacket lighten the look.

Looking for a less expensive dress?  Theory has a boatneck option that’s lovely.  For something under-$100, this Kasper dress is a nice option, also in plus-size.

Bold Summer Color

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Classiques Entier Tweed Front Jacket ($288) and Ponte Dress ($228) // M. Gemi Riveli Pumps ($278)

Looking to bring a little color party?  It’s a bold woman who wears red.  I like the mix of the softer tweed jacket with the simple sheath.  I also can’t tell you how smitten I am with my new M.Gemi pumps.  The mesh makes them unexpectedly, but subtly, sexy.

If red isn’t your preference, try this pale blue Vince Camuto tweed jacket and this Hugo Boss Kasie Sheath. It has a similar pop, but a more subdued one.

A More Relaxed Option

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WHBM Cutaway Blazer ($150) // Kate Spade Sicily Dress ($298) // Rebel Pendant ($79)

If you’re a younger employee (sub-25), sometimes dressing very conservatively isn’t your best play.  Hear me out on this. Smart, capable, well-spoken women are always valued, but if you possess this quality at young age, you will look even more impressive.

This outfit mixes a slight playfulness in the A-line skirt and the detailed jacket with a classic color combination.  The necklace lengthens the look.  Add a black pointed toe pump, you’re set to go.

Looking for a cheaper dress?  This Magaschoni dress is a nice.  Plus-size?  Try this Calvin Klein dress.

Ask The Edit, Style

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  1. B says:

    Agree with Belle on her third outfit comment – know your audience, you may not want to be too conservative. I’ve worked hard to brand myself as the progressive, with-it millennial/female voice in my company. I recently spent a day with the Chairman of the Board and the CEO (both younger/in their 40s). I would take into consideration where the meeting is taking place (ours was business casual). I wore this coat https://bit.ly/1cbgUWH with Banana Republic Sloan pants and Ferragamo heels.

    As much effort as you put into the outfit, I would recommend putting equal effort into making sure hair, makeup and nails are perfect. Investing in a good manicure (and go gel, if you’re into gels – it’s the only way to be sure you won’t chip it) is my ritual for the day before flying out to our corporate office or going to a big meeting. The combo of being dressed well and groomed to perfection is what will make you look like a million bucks.

  2. s says:

    Thanks Belle and B for recommendations!

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