Earlier this week I posted about extending our Summer frock wearing days into cooler weather by layering items underneath them. Some readers thought it was a great idea and I do too. I love wearing dresses, but loathe feeling cold, which makes it a welcome solution.

Here I layered the same black pussycat bow blouse underneath two sleeveless sheath dresses. The outfit on the left creates high contrast between the blouse and the dress, while the one on the right is almost monochromatic. I don’t favour one over the other, but they do have different vibes — the higher contrast outfit is definitely more dramatic. If you don’t like the “school girl” effect, keep the contrast low. Personally I’m fine with it and will happily layer a white shirt under a dark dress.

In both ensembles I knotted the neck tie of the blouse instead of creating a bow. That way I can sport my little bee brooch or drape a chunky necklace over the tie. I finished off the look with patterned hose and low heeled biker booties, but you can leave off the hose and substitute pumps, oxfords or boots. When the temperatures get colder I’ll add another layer: a cheeky cropped jacket, a boyfriend blazer, a trench coat or a wool coat.

These outfits are creative business casual. You might not be as dressy as I am on a day to day basis, so by all means swap out the components for more casual items. There is no end to the creative possibilities of layering!