What Makes a Dress Professional, Smart & Chic? Best Office Dresses – Elie Tahari Sylvia Dress

A work-appropriate look you can get excited about. 

Best Office Dresses - Best professional DressesI love dresses. Love them for work, love them for play, love them when I’m not even leaving my house. So it was a little daunting to pick The One – the first dress to post on Commandress (and, appropriately, the first post!). And here it is:  this dress is a winner in every category.

Color:  a beautiful and rich cobalt blue (bold, but not too bright) with navy trim at the neckline and waist. Black accessories (like the shoes pictured here) look sharp, and don’t suggest that you confused navy and black while you were still waking up this morning.

Length:  perfect for the office.  Depending on your height, the hem would fall right at, above, or below the knee.

Tailoring:  a clean, modern, and feminine shape with a unique neckline and sleeves. There is a lot to admire here, but the overall look remains understated. The tailoring creates curves on a slim straight figure (like the model’s) and would accentuate the shape of an hourglass figure. Surely we can thank Mad Men for inspiring this design, but the dress is tailored to skim rather than cling – you could go up a size to play down the Joan Holloway effect.

And the sash tie:  I know bows aren’t for everyone, but if you love them like I do you’ll see that this one is feminine and graceful without looking too girly or precious.

In sum:  beautiful, sophisticated, and confident. The Elie Tahari Sylvia Dress is $398 from Neiman Marcus.

Disclosure: this post includes affiliate links for Neiman Marcus.


  1. Commandress says

    Jackpot! I found this beautiful dress on sale at Lord & Taylor’s flagship store in New York last week, and it really is the office dress of my dreams! Love the color, love the fit, love the length, and love all the pretty details that make the dress so special.

  2. says

    Speaking of mad – I have mad love for this dress. It is way too dainty and girly looking for my usual, but that may just be some neurosis irrational fear of looking weak talking. The part of me that wants to be unapologetically feminine has a dress-crush.

    (I just found your blog today, love it, and am learning a lot!)