Professionalism Meets Fashion: What To Wear To An Interview
Everyone I know who has been for an interview, whether it was for a job, for an internship or for a university placement, have all spent the week previous stressing over what to wear. Should you go all out with the full office skirt suit? Should you stay true to you and go in your comfy jeans and favourite t-shirt? I would have completely discarded the jeans and t-shirt combo until the other day when I attended an interview/assessment and someone wearing this exact outfit got the job!
It is a tricky situation and you can spend sleepless nights trying to decide on the perfect outfit. You don’t want to look unfashionable, but you also don’t want to look unprofessional. It’s not an easy thing to do, but by intertwining professionalism and fashion you can create the perfect interview outfit. Gone are the days of the boring suit trouser and white shirt pairing. Don’t be afraid to add some colour into your outfit and integrate the latest fashion trends.
The single most important thing before taking on this advice of how to create the perfect interview outfit is to make sure you’re comfortable. Make sure it is something you would wear again – don’t jump out of your zone and try to reinvent yourself just to impress someone. If you’re not comfortable with what you’re wearing chances are it will stress you out even more, so relax, be rationale and kill that interview!
You can dress any old boring outfit up with a strong piece of statement jewellery. Retail stores are packed with large bulky necklaces that add that element of glamour to an ensemble. You can play it safe if you’re feeling unadventurous in a white blouse, but make sure you inject some colour by adding jewellery. It doesn’t have to be a necklace, although with a plain shirt it creates the perfect mix of professionalism and fashion; bold bracelets and earrings also make a statement and allow you to show of your personality behind the plain office wear.
Firstly be wise about this. If you’re interview is quite far away and you have to walk a long distance to get there, wearing heels is probably not going to be the best idea. If your feet are hurting and blistered this is only going to put you in a bad mood before your interview, but if you know the interview isn’t too far away and you’re comfortable in heels then go for it! A plain outfit can be brought to life by adding a pair of killer heels. Coloured ones are especially effective, and as well as elongating the legs, wearing heels will give you the confidence to walk in and smash that interview.
If you tend to be more reserved, and the thought of a bright pair of heels or a huge necklace is nothing but daunting for you, don’t be dismayed! There are always more options. Admittedly I am a bit of a plain Jayne, but there’s nothing I like more than a big bold handbag. My trusty River Island bag is the perfect mixture of orange and monochrome and has got more compliments than me on my previous job search. A bag is an unattached accessory making it the perfect add on to make sure your outfit is on trend.
There’s nothing more office like than a pair of black straight leg trousers. Black, as we know goes with everything, so why not switch it up a bit? Instead of going with black trousers, go with a black shirt or blouse and jazz up the outfit with a pair of patterned trousers. Now the kind of pattern you choose to go for will depend on how you want to appear to your employee and again, what you are comfortable with. If it’s bright colours, go for it! Just don’t over compensate with bright jewellery and a bright handbag too. Find the perfect balance of pattern and plain clothing to make an equally professional and fashion forward interview outfit.
Someone once told me when giving advice on what to wear to an interview that “Blazers are always a winner”. They can make the most casual outfit look smart in a second and you can pick one up in every colour under the sun. Compliment the rest of your outfit with a suited blazer, draw from a colour you have in your handbag or in your necklace or go for the safe black option. There are multiple variations of the blazer, including the kimono which is everywhere at the moment in lots of different patterns, colours and styles.
These tips are certain to make you stand out in an interview. It will also show that you have skills in portraying your personality in an organised professional way without restricting yourself to the office norm. Now, what are you waiting for? Go get that job!