Prepping lesson plans and a refreshed wardrobe for a new school year? Feeling like you're in an outfit rut after winter break? No matter the time of year, you can always find staple pieces to enhance your school teacher style.
You may have some of your own criteria in mind for finding outfits that work for school, or you may be in search of inspiration. Whether you have some ideas already or you need something to spark your creativity, some tips will be a big help. Check out our style guide for teachers, and you'll be filling your wardrobe with perfect pieces for the school year in no time.
Tips for Selecting Back to School Clothes for Teachers
Before we get into staple wardrobe pieces for teachers, we have some suggestions about how to select functional and trendy teacher outfits and items. These tips will give you an idea of what qualities to look for as you find pieces to fill out your wardrobe. Everything will be practical and fit your style, especially if you:
Choose Options That Are Easy to Wash
Whether you teach art or work with younger children, you'll be around art supplies. All the fun and creativity can lead to accidentally making art on your outfit, and in that case, you'll want pieces that you can machine wash rather than ones that require special care. Even if you aren't around art supplies, the hectic day of a teacher can lead to spills and stains, so you need reliable, low-maintenance clothes. Cotton is an excellent fabric choice for its washability, but be sure to check the tags on clothing you plan to wear to school.
As you fill your wardrobe, check the tags or care instructions to find pieces that are easy to maintain. When you fill your wardrobe with school teacher style, try to avoid:
- Pieces that are dry clean only
- Fabrics that you need to iron
- Clothing that requires other special care
Unless you don't mind dedicating the extra time to high-maintenance clothes, choose pieces that you can easily machine wash and dry and fabrics that give up stains easily. You don't want to add a new piece to your wardrobe only to wear it once, get it covered with paint and other art supplies, then have no easy way to clean and revive it.
Find Affordable Pieces
Try as you might, some stains may not come out, meaning you should prioritize choosing affordable pieces to fill your closet. Luckily, it's possible to get trendy teacher outfits without breaking the bank. You'll find affordable boutiques that offer versatile clothing you'll wear often, which will help you get your money's worth. You won't even have to compromise on style or quality, meaning your clothes will last longer and be stylish.
Choose Functional Clothing
Pockets, pockets, pockets! We love the thrill of finding a dress or skirt that features functional pockets, and for teachers, those accents can really come in handy. You should also select comfortable pieces that you won't have to fidget with throughout the day to keep in place. You'll end up wearing these comfortable pieces more often, which also helps get your money's worth.
Find Professional Pieces That Balance Fun
From everyday lessons to meetings with administrators and parents, teacher life requires a professional appearance. As you're shaping the minds of future generations, you should also combine a bit of fun in with professional attire. Those who teach younger children may especially want to jazz up their wardrobe with:
- Bright colors
- Interesting patterns
- Fun jewelry
No matter the age you teach, you should show off your personality with trendy teacher outfits that bring a polished look. It doesn't always have to be structured blazers or other clothes that give off a uniform vibe. Instead, select pieces that aren't too oversized or too tight. Clothes that fit appropriately can give any outfit a polished look instantly. Remember the neckline, as well. While not everything has to be a turtleneck to be appropriate, choose tops with a higher neck or layer pieces under V-neck styles.
Make sure that the patterns or pieces you wear aren't too distracting, either. Your students may get distracted by clothing items that are too out-there in shape, fit or pattern, so keep that in mind as you fill your wardrobe. You can add color and other fun elements but do so in moderation to keep your outfits work-appropriate. You want your students to focus on the lesson, not what you're wearing!
Consider Your Workplace
Every school is different, so school teacher style isn't always under one standard. Along with the tips in this style guide for teachers, make sure you consider:
- Any dress code requirements
- The general culture of your school
- Events or other occasions that require different styles
Some schools have a more relaxed culture where teachers can wear jeans and casual tops. Other schools may enforce a dress code either every day or for particular events. Be sure that what you add to your wardrobe fits the requirements at your workplace, no matter what they are.
Don't Forget to Accessorize
Accessories let you show off your personality and can add a polished finishing touch to any outfit. Wear comfortable yet standout jewelry that brings out your style and stays out of the way as you're teaching.
Daycare teachers and others who work with very young children may want to avoid dangling necklaces, scarves or other pieces that little children could grab. You can still accessorize when working with younger children, so consider wearing:
Educators who work with children of any age can benefit from hair accessories. Tie your hair up with stylish scrunchies and ties to add personality and function to your outfit, or add a headband or clips to keep everything in place. There's no more fiddling with hair in your face as you look down to grade or help a student with a question when you wear stylish yet functional hair accessories.
Another essential functional accessory is a large purse or tote bag. Carry your papers to and from the classroom in style with the right bag that adds function and style to any look!
Build a Wardrobe With Versatile Options
As the school year goes on, it's easy to feel like you've worn every outfit in your wardrobe multiple times. Beat the repeats with simple staple pieces that you can put together in several different combinations. Select various styles that you typically wear and incorporate:
- Basic pieces
- Solid colors
- Neutral colors
With versatile options, you could mix in patterns, textures and other materials to create a unique outfit for every day of the school week. When you wake up for another day, your wardrobe will inspire you instead of boring you.
Staple Wardrobe Pieces for Teachers
Take the tips above and apply them to your shopping list for staple wardrobe pieces, and you'll create a stunning collection perfect for any school day. Combine pieces you already own with new staples for a budget-friendly option or rehaul your wardrobe with some of our suggestions. Mix and match to suit your style, try something new or base your decisions on your outfit preferences.
Ready for a mini math lesson? A stylish outfit plus a cardigan equals a comfy look that fits perfectly with the school teacher style! A button-up cardigan is a classic, and it can even come with pockets, but your options aren't limited. Cardigans can also feature:
- Heavy knits to keep you warm
- Lightweight fabrics perfect for layering, even when it's not cold
- Fun patterns to add personality to your look
- Neutral and solid colors to add balance to your outfit
While oversized sweaters are trendy and comfortable, fitted cardigans will give your outfit a professional touch. They cover short sleeves, or you can button them up to cover lower necklines. If you're prone to spills, though, you'll want to make sure what you have on under the cardigan is work appropriate in case anything gets on your sweater and you want to take it off for the day.
Fun Maxi Dresses
Maxi and midi dresses suit countless styles, so whether you wear modern, cute, boho, chic or other looks, you'll find a dress that fits right in with your wardrobe. Get one specific style or branch out with:
- Black for something sleek
- A ruffled, boho style
- A solid neutral for a versatile option
A few staple dresses in your wardrobe can save the day when you're rushing in the morning and need something to throw on yet still look stylish. Remember that many dresses often require hand-washing rather than a machine treatment, but if you only plan to wear them occasionally throughout the year, that shouldn't be too difficult to work around.
Add skirts to your essentials list of back to school clothes for teachers! Pair a skirt with a fitted top tucked in and layer with a cardigan for a stylish, teacher-appropriate outfit. With so many colors, materials and patterns to consider, your options for skirts are endless. You can wear:
- Corduroy to stay warm in the fall and winter
- Plaid patterns for a school teacher style
- Neutrals to go with different tops
Keep your outfit professional with skirt styles that fall at or below your knee. The length of the skirt won't limit the number of styles you have available to choose from because you can get:
- Pencil for a polished and professional look
- A-line for something mature and trendy
- Swing for something flowy and fun
- High-low for a modern and stylish look
Many teachers wear skirts because they're simple and comfortable to wear, but they make any outfit look professional.
If your school allows jeans, you're set for staple bottoms. Just remember when choosing denim bottoms that options without tears or fraying look the most appropriate. For teachers with less casual dress requirements, opt for trousers and other dress pants that can work for business casual or dressed-up looks.
Versatile Shirts and Blouses
A selection of versatile tops can create even more combinations in your wardrobe than you had before. For flexibility, choose tops with:
- Lightweight fabrics: Light fabrics make tops that are perfect for layering or wearing on warm days. If you're actively moving around the classroom, you don't want to work up a sweat, so choose something breezy and breathable.
- Short sleeves: Short sleeve tops make great layering pieces under cardigans, jackets, sweaters and more. Ditch the layers during warmer days, and you'll still have a fun look. Remember that higher necklines and the right fit will make your top look all the more appropriate and professional.
- Simple patterns: Staple pieces don't have to be solid, neutral colors, though that will help fill out your wardrobe. Play around with some basic stripes, florals or dots as foundation patterns that go well with solid colors. You can even get daring and mix patterns for a fun look.
Tuck the top into a skirt or pair of dressy pants for a professional look, or wear a stylish top with jeans for a casual but not too casual outfit that's perfect for Fridays at work.
Comfortable Yet Trendy Shoes
Comfortable shoes are essential for any teacher. From standing at the board to walking around the classroom, you'll be on your feet most of the day. You may think heels are the only professional shoe choice, but you've got plenty of functional footwear possibilities. When you add shoes to your wardrobe, be sure to:
- Avoid open-toe shoes: For many teachers, it can be a hazard to wear open-toe shoes because of the potential for falling objects. Teachers who work in science labs are typically required to wear closed-toe shoes for safety. If you do not have these requirements, you could wear stylish sandals during warmer seasons, but you have better options out there that provide more comfort and support.
- Opt for low heels or wedges: If you absolutely want to wear heels, pick comfortable pairs with manageable height. Anything from sandals to booties can feature low heels or wedges, so you have a lot of options for any season.
- Find comfortable and versatile staple pieces: No matter your favorite style of shoe, get a durable pair or two in neutral colors that will match anything in your wardrobe.
You'll also want to have shoes that function for different events and activities, like:
- Sneakers for field trips, field day and recess
- Dressy flats or heels for conferences, school concerts and other formal affairs
- A pair that's easy to clean to wear on arts and crafts days
Footwear is the most functional part of any teacher's outfit. Take extra care when selecting shoes for your wardrobe so you get pairs that provide the support you need every day of the week.
Get Back to School Clothes for Teachers at My Sister's Closet Boutique
Rock your school teacher style with fabulous pieces from My Sister's Closet Boutique. We have the clothing, shoes and accessories you need to build a flexible, functional wardrobe that's sure to keep up with you and your students. You'll find everyday pieces that are easy to wear and style, great for any teacher!
Browse our dresses, skirts, other bottoms, cardigans and other tops to find functional clothing at an affordable price. Find clothes that will last through the school year without compromising on style or price. Get quality options in gorgeous styles and amazing prices with us at My Sister's Closet Boutique!