When it comes to style, Americans need the most help figuring out how to define “smart casual.”
That was the takeaway from a recent survey conducted by Trunk Club. The personalized styling service for men and women studied more than 400 search engine queries about style as well as 200-plus general style questions in all 50 states. The term is smart casual topped the list in 21 states.
Lisey Barela, head of styling for Trunk Club at its headquarters in Chicago, offered this explanation to customers: “Where casual meets formal, you will find the smart casual dress code. Use your best judgment depending on the location and event, and don’t be afraid to incorporate your personality into the look. For ladies at the office, this might mean denim with a pump and a structured jacket. For men at work, consider adding a sweater on top of your button-down shirt paired with dark denim and a brown boot.”
Tied for second place among consumers were searches for “professional” and “trendy” styles, which came up on top in seven states. That was followed by “bohemian” and “vintage” with four states each.
Leggings turned out to be a question mark for shoppers in Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Maine, New Hampshire and New Mexico who sought out advice on how to best wear them.
Barela offered this explanation: “When styled right, leggings can be a versatile addition to your wardrobe beyond the gym. They match well with oversize sweaters and tunics that cover the rear. You can round the look off with a casual, platform sneaker or a knee-high boot.”
How to wear leggings was actually the third most frequently searched fashion question of the year, Trunk Club said, with “how to wear a tie” and “how to dress smart” coming in as searches more often, and “how to wear a skirt” and “how to dress petite” ranking number four and five in 2018.
Trunk Club is a division of Nordstrom, which bought the company in 2014.