Before I came to Qatar I was told that our office had passed a new rule stipulating that women had to wear pants. Turns out that a few of the ladies were showing a bit too much leg in their skirts. For shame! But even if it’s not a rule, I’d still wear pants. There is only 1 woman at my work (out of about 200) who wears skirts and she’s widely regarded as the crazy cat lady. Not that she has a cat or anything, she just has that air about her! And even though the skirts are knee-length, there’s still something inappropriate about it.
I never used to wear pants to work, but now I do I love it! I feel way more busy and important in a pair of high wasted, wide-legs!
My work uniform is pants, a simple top (Witchery I love you) and a ¾ length light blazer. I think wearing a top that is above your elbows is ok, as long as your chest is covered. Always, always cover your chest and don’t wear anything too tight unless you have a cardigan or blazer to put over the top. You don’t want to be offensive, especially at work. The locals will be wearing traditional dress, which means full cover. And if you’re like me you’ll have clients of all different nationalities and religions coming and going all day so it’s important to look inconspicuous.
Shoes are the fun part. The locals wear brightly coloured, sky-high, platform stilettos!! It is like a haute cutour fashion show every day of the week. My other colleagues wear ballet flats, wedges and pumps. I like to wear at least a low heel at work cause it makes me feel like I have more authority! But low pumps are impossible to find here so stock up at home before you come!
Oh – I should also mention that aircon cranks here so if you’re like me and you hate the cold bring a cardigan and scarf to work. I mean a full-on winter scarf, not some summer thing – you’ll thank me when you get here.
Exception: I would definitely say that the one exception to the pants rule is at networking events. There are quite a few aimed at professional women in Doha and a lot of women wear skirt suits. It’s best to keep them knee-length but since there usually aren’t many locals attending the appropriate-ness level is lowered a bit.
- Images: nomad*