A month of reasonable professor work outfits: Week 1

It’s back to college season which means it’s time for another round of what to wear as a university professor or lecturer! Being a woman in academia can make this question feel both flexible and challenging–there’s no dress code for female professor style but what you wear to class can increase your comfort and confidence! So here’s my first week of outfit ideas to start the fall semester off right!

This week is accidentally a tour of trends I’m using to update my 2022 work style. I try not to be addicted to what’s “in” and “out” in fashion, but I do like to buy new trends when they work with my style and needs. So, here are some teacher-friendly updates that I’m liking for fall!


Wide leg pants are having a ~~moment~~ and I think they’re a great way to update your teacher style (as you’ll see throughout this post). They’re comfy and dramatic at the same time. I found this particular pair secondhand through ThredUp–lots of my clothes are from online secondhand stores.

Button down

Pants (similar)


Laptop bag (similar–or mine is the Everlane form bag if you want to search secondhand)


Would you wear cargo pants to work? I found this silky pair from J. Crew–which is doing some style revamping if you haven’t browsed there in a while. I love anything that feels kind of Y2K right now so this Kim Possible look was a yes for me.

Button down





This outfit was inspired by some Max Mara styling I saw recently–I love adding in some casual items with my business casual clothes because most campuses don’t have dress codes. Also if you’re going to pick one pair of wide leg pants I would make it these, I have 2 pairs because the cut is incredible and they’re very lightweight for summer weather!

Blazer (similar)

Tee (Monet is no longer available, may I suggest Winona?)

Pants (get 20% off your order with code PHDINCLOTHES)




I have had a floral skirt hanging out in my closet, neglected, for 2 years at this point. I really like this one on paper but whenever I put it on it feels SO bright. I toned it down and convinced myself to wear it out of the house this time.

Also, long socks are a thing this fall, and I think they’re nerdy enough to be fun in an academic or research job!


Skirt (similar)


Socks are very old from Target


I’m definitely keeping a couple pairs of skinny jeans around, sometimes they are just the perfect “neutral” pair of pants for casual Fridays. Finally in the trend report: sweater vests. Another item that is “in” for fall that coincides with my office and lifestyle.

Tee (a great shirt for teaching, use code PHDINCLOTHES to save at checkout)

Sweater vest (similar)



See you next week for week 2!

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