My Desk Is My Second Closet

Catherine keeps shoes, sweaters, and an arsenal of beauty products at her desk. What's in your emergency office stash?

Desk as closet
(Image credit: Marie Claire)

Last week, I introduced you to my closet at home (opens in new tab), but I have another collection at work. Besides all the beauty products (opens in new tab) I keep in and around my desk, I also have two emergency pairs of shoes — one brown and one black, so most outfits are covered no matter what. Coworkers have scoffed at my work shoe collection, but a broken flip-flop incident during college that meant I had to ride the bus home in shoeless shame scarred me for life.

During the cold months, my shoe collection grows by at least one pair. On snowy days, I grab some Merrells that are perfect for keeping me from slipping on the icy sidewalks. When it's bitterly cold, I wear my UGGs proudly — my feet are never warmer. And rainy days are a little bit more bearable with my plaid rain boots.

Just as important as emergency shoes are emergency layers. My office is overly cool during the summer, and I've reached for my thick sweater more than once this month already — even though it's 90 degrees outside. A second, thinner cardi, branded with my company's logo, is a perfect just-in-case topper that's also work-appropriate.

And because I don't usually bring a purse to work, I have one at my desk for those last-minute lunch invites.

I know I'm not alone in being fashionably prepared at work. What "just in case" items you store at your desk?

Catherine Hageman dispatches fashionista tendencies fit for a corporate career on Small Town, Big Wardrobe (opens in new tab).