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Can lace be too racy to wear to work? Add to ...

The question

I love wearing lace accents, but is the fabric too suggestive of lingerie to wear to work?

The answer

The easiest answer to this is also the most imprecise: It depends. A few weeks back, I wore a lace shirt under a black ribbed sweatshirt. Since only the collar and shirttails were visible, voilà: non-risqué lace.

Alternatively, consider a top with lace fabric blocking – that is, strategic panels across the shoulders or arms rather than all-over lace.

Your comfort level will also depend on your office environment. I recently attended a seminar at the headquarters of a large French beauty brand and the manager’s bra was fully visible beneath a sweater that alternated cashmere and chiffon. But this was in Paris, where a hint of lingerie is perfectly acceptable.

Perhaps you could test the waters on a day when you have no important meetings scheduled. If you feel overexposed, simply dial back the degree of skin.

After all, as with artisanal French butter, a little goes a long way.

Amy Verner is The Globe and Mail’s Paris-based style reporter. Follow her on Twitter: @amyverner. Have a fashion question? E-mail style@globeandmail.com.

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