By Jacqueline Kelly–
With summer break looming, finding a job or internship may be at the forefront of your mind. But before landing the gig comes the dreaded interview process, and everyone knows what you wear is crucial. Here are a few tips and ideas for overcoming any anxiety you may have about putting together an interview appropriate outfit.
Classic and sophisticated
If you identify with a classic type of style, you’re already on the right track when it comes to dressing for an interview. Some of your closet staples may even be appropriate. Tailored suits, blazers, button ups, pencil skirts and ties are all great options because they’re sleek and professional. Add a minimal, sophisticated watch to complete the refined look.
Comfortable and professional
Interview attire—and work wear in general—gets a bad rep for being stuffy and uncomfortable. But that doesn’t have to be the case. If you have a hard time with interview attire because you’re a sweats kind of person, try injecting a bit of everyday comfort into your interview attire.
Shoe choice is a great way to do this. You don’t have to wear heels or anything that feels awkward to look interview appropriate. Loafers have a professional edge to them, so you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for professionalism.
You can also try going for lightweight, breathable fabrics to combat the stuffy feel some formal clothing can have.
Fun and creative
Another misconception about work wear is that it lacks personality. Depending on the job or internship you apply for, there may be a bit more room for getting creative with your style options. A fashion related interview, for instance, will allow more self-expression than an interview with a corporate company. However, that doesn’t mean you get to slack off.
A nice rule of thumb is to stick with timeless pieces, but in interesting colors. Try a pair of tapered trousers in a bright color like cobalt blue or muted coral. Finish the outfit with a button up for a fun, yet interview appropriate look.
If for some reason you’re lucky enough to be interviewing with a company that allows a more casual dress code, congrats. Like creative fields, a casual dress code provides a bit of freedom. However, you should keep a few things in mind because it’s easy to become lax and enter frumpy territory.
It’s probably best to forgo your favorite jeans, but you can opt for a pair of ankle length pants and some kind of flats like oxfords, loafers or ballet flats. Blazers are still a nice option for the top half. Or, try a blouse under a simple, lightweight cardigan.