Proper Dressing For An Interview.
All right, let’s deal with the simple gold hoop, the tasteful stud, a simple drop pendant, the feathered hand-carved wooden fetish original ear art picked up in Fiji is acceptable and do you wear it or not? It’s your call, just like goatees, beards, dreads, necklaces, and bracelets. Your freedom to wear what you choose is not in question but your right to have a particular job is in the eye of the beholder who is offering the job. If it’s important to you to express your individuality, then the employer who finds these elements uncomfortable will the opportunity the job offers is worth some self-adjustment, well, perhaps you can sacrifice some style points.
The first items you purchase for your career will make up the interview wardrobe. In the following field guide, we will break down the various elements that go into this wardrobe and explain how to get the most impact with the least amount of money.
An interview suit needs to be bulletproof: Something that looks perfect on you and makes you feel confident and secure about the person who fills it out. When matched with a simple shirt-and-tie combination, the outfit should make you look like you’ve worked at the company for years.
And, with any luck, you will.
How to Buy an Interview Suit
COLOR: Navy, its sophisticated enough to wear anywhere, any time, any season. And every other color gray, brown, red, green, even black mixes with it easily and effortlessly.
JACKET CUT: Timeless style: Single-breasted, two-but-ton with medium lapels. Center vent or no vent, your call. The hem of the jacket should fall roughly where your fist ends when your arms hang down. The sleeves should allow for a ½” of shirt cuff to show. Shoulders should be padded to make you look formidable but not so much that you’re ready for the NFL.
PANT: There are only two decisions: Flat front or pleated? Each is perfectly appropriate in the workplace, but flat front is more slimming. The other choice is cuffs or no cuffs. There is on choice. Get your suit trousers cuffed: 1 ½”. This will give the pants the proper break at the instep.
FABRIC: Wool is your only selection here, and worsted is best. It’s heavy enough to wear in colder weather and light enough for summer. This allows your suit to be as versatile as possible.
FIT: Get the suit tailored properly, either in the store or by your local tailor. Before you see the tailor, though, walk around a bit, then stand in front of a three-way mirror and ask yourself a few questions: Can you button the jacket? Can you breathe when it’s buttoned? Can you move your arms comfortably? Does it bulge in the back? Can you sit in it? Do the pants have enough room in the waist? Too much? Is the seat too tight? Did you look at the price tag? When you’ve satisfied these criteria, you’re ready to buy your first suit.
What you wear on an interview doesn’t have to dazzle the person you’re meeting in fact, it’s probably best if he or she hardly even notices what you’re wearing. So what kind of impression are you had on? The appropriate one. In a suit with a simple shirt-and-tie combination you will be dressed smartly for an interview. Now you have to act it.
Suit Jacket: Since a suit is essentially the most expensive investment you will be making toward a new job, it pays to get your money’s worth. A navy suit will work harder than the other suits in the closet because the jacket can double as a blue blazer, giving you a greater return on your investment.
ALIGNMENT: If the buttons on the jacket don’t align when closed, it may not fit properly.
POCKETS: The best way to ensure that the suit pockets don’t bulge out? Don’t open them.
WAIST: Even if you want to wear suspenders, always get a suit with belt loops.
PLEATS VS. FLAT: Pleated pants may be better suited for larger men, but flat-front trousers will be more slimming.
REAR VIEW: Have a tailor check to make sure the seat isn’t too snug or too baggy.
As important as wearing the suit is to a man, a shirt and tie allow him to express his individuality. Select a shirt that sends the best message about who you are.
WHITE DRESS SHIRT
KEY POINTS: Straight collar of medium length.
Button cuffs. Broadcloth.
There is on occasion for which a white shirt is inappropriate. It goes with everything from a sport jacket to khakis to jeans, and when paired with a suit it sends just the right message: Neat and efficient. A white shirt with this collar works with any face shape and any coloring, but it will all be in vain if it isn’t cleaned and pressed properly.
BLUE DRESS SHIRT
KEY POINTS: Straight collar of medium length. Button cuffs. Made of end-on-end cotton, which faintly shows the cross-stitch weave. Like a white shirt, blue is an all-purpose choice. And in some ways it may be better. Whereas white may reveal certain conformity, a blue dress shirt signals that you are your own man, Once again, keep it clean and pressed, and wear a white T-shirt underneath to keep it dry.
Perhaps nothing signals a man’s individuality more than a tie. In theory, you could wear the same suit and shirt every day-don’t-but by changing ties, it would all look new. And yet, men often get tied up in knots trying to decide what to buy.
BLUE PATTERNED SILK NECKITE
A good rule to follow is this: The bolder the design, the bolder the personality.
So be careful not to overpower someone with a wild pattern. A small, simple pattern a check, a dot, etc. is ideal. A tie with various blues in it may be the most versatile as you start to build your wardrobe.
STRIPED SILK NECKITE
A preppy classic, the striped belongs in every man’s closet. The downward pattern and often bold colors can give a great lift to an otherwise staid outfit. Choose a striped tie with some navy red, green, or various shades in that range.
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