Posted on 27 July 2016

Women in the corporate world often struggle with their work attire - they want to be festive and stylish while still looking professional. Our friend and first fan, Arielle Patrick, has a solution to this work-outfit dilemma. As deemed by Marie Claire, 'The Olivia Pope of New York City,' Arielle leads a very busy corporate lifestyle but always manages to look polished and chic. Arielle came to the MESTIZA office to share her secrets on how she perfects her work look. 


Tells us about yourself! What do you do in NYC?

I wear several hats, but my primary one is my role as a financial communications strategist at one of the world's largest PR firms, advising companies of all sectors and sizes on how to handle transactions and other legal issues affecting their investors and other key stakeholders. Another part of my job is running proactive and issues management-focused media relations programs for financial services companies such as hedge funds, private equity and asset management firms. 
The part of my life that gives me the most joy (aside from being a sister and daughter) is my role as a philanthropist. I serve a number of non profit organizations in many ways throughout the year, but the most dear to me are my roles as Chair of the National Audubon Society's New York Young Members, and on the Leadership Committee of the American Friends of the Louvre museum in Paris.


I know a lot of women struggle to find an outfit that is festive, yet still work-appropriate. Can you relate to these women?

I can relate, tenfold. I've always had a bold personality and loved fashion...but constantly remember my mother's voice in my head when it comes to what is deemed "appropriate" attire for the workplace. 
The good news is you don't have to sacrifice your sense of style as a woman in the corporate world. 
That said, it's not always beneficial to draw too much attention to yourself either. As women in male-dominated industries, we have enough working against us! I pray for the day when I can wear my most form-fitting dresses to the boardroom... but unfortunately today is not that day. 

What is something you can wear no matter the occasion?

Ladies: this may seem a bit unusual...but my best advice is to trade in your LBD (little black dress) for a navy one. This is a softer color for the office and transcends all seasons, like including summer, when black is a little severe... but it still translates from day to night. 


What is the most unusual piece in your wardrobe?

Funnily enough, my white and gray two-tone Gucci wallet. It's been mine since high school after being passed on to me by my mother, who's had it since her high school days!


Is there a must-have item of clothing, an accessory, etc. that every woman looking to find a balance between looking stylish and appropriate in an office environment should own?

Every woman should own a crisp white collared blouse. It can make even the boldest outfit a bit more corporate. It looks great with a fitted, slightly sexier skirt without looking provocative.


How would you best style our festive pieces with items from your own wardrobe to create an office-appropriate look?

With the BIRDS OF PARADISE STRAPLESS STRETCH JUMPSUIT, I'd pair it with the MESTIZA NEW YORK jacket (coming soon in the Spring/Summer 2017 collection!!) to cover up the shoulders. This jacket is conservative in theory because of the refined silk wool and Chanel-esque shape, but the sequined lapel keeps it fresh. Since the pants are ankle length,I would put some high black pumps on to lengthen the body.

I actually love the MARIA LUISA ALHAMBRA MIDI DRESS because of its length. It cuts right below the knee so it's appropriate, but it's fitted to the body to show your shape. My Sisley ivory blazer makes the dress a bit more corporate, but still summery. In the winter months, I'd pair it with a fitted black cardigan because  there is a little bit of black in the fabric. 
The SHIMMY SHIMMY SILVER LEAF COCKTAIL DRESS speaks for itself. No styling necessary. The pattern is so whimsical and youthful yet the shape is very mature and appropriate for the office. The best part about this frock is how comfortable it is. I spend hours sitting at a desk or in meetings so comfort is key. 


What do you like to do after hours?

A typical night during the week entails catch up with my mentors over dinner, followed by an event or two related to my philanthropic projects. In short, I'm rarely not "working!" When I need to relax, I love going to Exhale Spa for a manicure, facial or barre / yoga class. They are open in the evening works well with my client schedule.

What do you do on your free time?

Spending time with my family is priority number one. Secondary would be reading a good book. Right now, I'm getting re-acquainted with our Presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton by reading her autobiography, "Living History." 

Who is your fashion icon and why?
My mother: queen of the beautifully tailored blazer, crisp white collared shirt, and jeans. I can count on one hand how many times I've seen her without heels throughout my 27 years of life. 
Mom always cautioned me against following temporary trends, and staying true to classic style. 
Unsurprisingly, she was right. I don't think I've ever looked back on an old picture and thought "ugh I wish I hadn't worn those awful bell-bottoms!" 

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1 comment

  • Elsie: July 28, 2016

    Love the article and can relate!

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