I won’t claim to be an expert in how to interview for jobs – I’m always trying to get better at just handling my nerves and talking myself up – but I think I have a good hold on what makes a good interview outfit. The best advice I’ve ever gotten is to remember that you’re trying to look right for that job at that company. I always ask my interviewer beforehand about appropriate office attire, then dress to fit that standard and the level of job I’m applying for, with styling that reflects the character of the company.
For most jobs, I’ve found that it’s hard to go wrong with a classic suit, long-sleeve button-up blouse, and moderately high heels – but I’ve dressed in dark jeans, silk blouse and flats before for very casual company. Think traditional neutral for a suit, like black, navy, brown, tan or gray in a solid or subtle pattern. (While a white or olive green suit might be neutrals, in my opinion, they stand out too much for an interview that is supposed to about you, not your clothes.) A well-made suit will always be a great investment, both for interviewing and later on the job. From there, I choose my shirt and shoes based on the attitude and industry of the company.
For the administrative positions at creative companies I’ve been looking at, I stuck with the suit but chose to put it together with a fun, stylishly sophisticated color palette of dove gray, clean white and just a small pop of turquoise. I’ve always been taught to lean toward the conservative even with creative companies, so I chose just one detail to make a style statement. I’ve been searching for a job for the last few weeks – and just got a job offer!