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The first official record of “females engaged in occupation” was the 1870 US Census, which showed that despite popular belief women were engaged in all sorts of things from factory work to dressmaking, teaching, mining, ship rigging, gunsmithing and hunting. But despite all this hard work, even now we are still paid less than our male counterparts! Never fear, though, we know we’ll get there soon. And, what’s more, we’ll do it in style. So, feel free to consider your next purchase a worthy investment in the future

Breaking out of centuries of social restriction has required a change in the way women dress. We might still like to keep things neat with this sharp little Piazza Sempione jacket, but corsets just aren't practical.

The ladies at the Tuberculosis Society during WWI liked to rock cloches and oversized jackets. Aspesi has taken a leaf from their book with their Prince of Wales check manteau.

Period petticoats weighed up to 6kg so its no wonder women ditched them during WWII even though they were occasionally arrested for cross-dressing! This season wide-leg pants are back and the best are from Aspesi.

People think that women working in science is a new fad, but an ancient Egyptian inscription circa 2700 BC records a woman, Merit-Phat, as the Chief Physician. Why not swap that stiff lab coat for a lux Fabiana Filippi jacket.

By the 1960s, women were burning their bras and crashing through the office doors in unprecedented numbers. These days we're just as determined, but a little more discreet, just like this cady dress from Aspesi. 

The Seventies may have been fun, but what a fashion catastrophe. Still, if we didn't have the funky experimentation of flares and knee-high socks, we'd never have Piazza Sempione's edgy houndstooth suit. 

No matter the era, every working girl needs a few sensible staples in her wardrobe, and this season its Lorena Antoniazzi's silky soft, sheer rollneck, which will fit neatly under any jacket.

Workwear has come a long way since women first entered the workplace. Nowadays, we can wear whatever we please whether that be a pin-striped suit or Piazza Sempione's equally serious fitted dress with white stitching.

Progress may have been slower than we like at times, but we know we'll get there whether we're wearing embroidered silk Edwardian pumps or Fabiana Filippi's cool silver brogues.

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