When it comes to business fashion for women, how much and which colours to choose is a permanent question. The human eye can distinguish around 100.000 colours shades. Computers can difference millions of colours. When dressing for work we all try to match timeless style with the little extra. No-one of us wants to wear only grey and black. Though these are still the dominant colours in business fashion. With this article we want to show you the classical colours but also how to allow yourself a bit more colours in your business fashion.

Classical colours in business fashion

The classical colours of a business wardrobe are all from the so-called “cold” colours. There is not red or yellow shades in them. The basic colours are Black, brown, blue, grey, beige and white. Here a little history of these colours


As the judge’s gown or robes in church, black is a colour symbolising authority and dignity.  Further it is a rather practical colour, easy to combine and nearly perfect for all body shapes.

But black is as well still the colour of sadness and sorrow.

Black can be seducing and perfect for all occasions as the “little black dress” invented by Chanel. The fully black outfit is though not up to date for business anymore. Better to move towards a slightly casual look thanks to a little touch of colour, or more sporty shoes. Black is perfect to be combined with a dark navy blue. Soft black colour tones or mixes with other colours are what is in fashion.


The British say “no brown in town” – for them it is a colour for the countryside rather than for the city. Historically a practical reason: dust and dirt would not be seen too easily.

Also for business fashion, brown is focussing on the practical aspect. Easy to care for, brown offers a good basic colour to create outfits. Brown though did only enter the business fashion in the 70s- much later than black, grey or blue. Brown can be warmer in terms of colours. But keep in mind that orange-brown mixes can quickly look cheap. A brown with few red pigments looks classy and casual.


The favourite of all colours for women- at least this is what 36% say. [just for info the less favourite colour is orange 🙂 ]

And easy to understand: Blue is perfect to combine, a timeless and classical colour without being intrusive. Blue is as well the colour of endless dimensions and space in pictures and real world when looking at the sky or ocean.

When talking about blue in business fashion, we mostly mean navy or royal blue. These colours are symbols for authority and elegance. Midnight-blue is nearly as dark as black and just perfect with any outfit. A navy coloured blazer for example goes with literally anything and should be in every business wardrobe.  The same jacket you can wear as well with jeans and sneakers after work or going for a drink.


Grey had in the past the image of being boring and indecisive, today grey perfectly integrated in business fashion. But grey kept for long the image of being invisible and not enough fashionable.

But especially with high quality fabrics can grey just look sublime. Carefully matched can grey be a good business colour for an easy combination. Especially with light colours and more colourful outfits it goes well. The only shade to really avoid is silver shimmery grey which often looks cheap.


Beige has a similar history as grey and can look of no interest or too plain. But while beige is a background colour, it is perfect to highlight another one. To be careful though to choose beige without too much yellow in the shade as this will highlight the red shade in your skin and will make you look old.

A light grey beige can just be perfect with royal blue.


All associations made with white colour are positive. Innocence, purity, truth are some. These are good qualities for business but not the only reason to wear white for work.

But please not complete white outfits. These will make you look like a bride and unexperienced. This is not what strong business women want to express.

Better to combine white with other colours. The white shirt to the black or marine blue outfits is a must-have. But white sneaker to a business casual look can work as well.

New business fashion colours

But as business fashion gets more open towards new trends, colours and possibilities, colours cannot perfectly be mixed. The basic colours mentioned before are still perfect to start from. But it is absolutely possible to mix a black dress with a colourful scarf or a navy suit with a soft pink shirt.

Business casual is key and now accepted in most professions. Keep it light though professional is the theme. Have basics which are working every day as your shoes or handbag and combine these with some more colourful pieces. Or go for different cuts, buttons, or details in your work looks.

Business women want equality and to express themselves. Fashion can be a powerful tool to do this.

Colours of your business bag

When it comes to your handbag, look for colours which match easily. The goal is to keep the same bag from day to day and over a long period. This means the handbag needs to match all of your outfits.

This for we did create the laptop bags from Bag Affair not only in timeless designs and shapes but also colours. Black with marine blue for example just goes with anything. The natural soft beige of cork as well can be combines with anything. A light colour with some gold touch is easy to match.

Further did you realize that most of our bags are bi-coloured? This is for a reason. This breaks the visual look of the bags and make them lighter and easy to be combined.

Choose your business colours

When it comes to looks, shapes and colours there is definitely too many opinions out there. Be true to yourself and choose what you like, not what people tell you to wear.

Dress nicely with high quality clothes. Choose pieces made to last and easy to combine. Even a business capsule wardrobe can be great as it makes mix and matching easier.

If you have your business outfits ready there is one thing less to think about in the morning.