Have you heard the quote, “You have to dress the part to get the part?” Or my favorite, “Put your best dressed foot forward?” Both are essentially saying, invest in yourself to get yourself where you need to be. Even in Pursuit of Happiness, homeless Will Smith scrounges for a business shirt – the pants are another story.
So what do you do when you have an important interview? Or a networking event?
Dress the part!
Every woman should own a few items that they can throw on when these events occur. First impressions matter and wearing well-fitted clothes and appearing like you put effort into yourself will go a long way.
1. A solid pair of black pants. By solid I mean two things, solid black color, and solid meaning good quality. Try them on. Put time into buying these pants and make sure they fit well. Don’t let them be too tight, especially in the butt and thigh area.
2. A comfortable pair of heels. There are literally hundreds of shoe companies that are trying to cater to us. The working woman. Make sure you are benefiting from it. If you aren’t into high heels, consider kitten heels. They provide a little “oomph” to your step and to your legs. Heels can help you feel more confident which can only reap more benefits. I’m not saying you go out and buy Valentinos, but stores like DSW are great for discount but quality shoes.
I love my nude Ferragamos, the one’s listed here are black. If you hold out for deals, you can get them for at least 50% off!
These Cole Haan pumps are really comfy too!
3. A nice blouse. Any color, any style (not too trendy) and something that flatters your figure. Your clothes should allow you to express yourself and feel confident. I love bright colors and prints so for my interviews for getting into Allergy/Immunology fellowship I still stayed true to myself while adhering so dressing norms for the interview process. I wish I had pictures but I had no idea I’d be starting a blog at that time!
4. A shift dress. Dresses are awesome because you have a full outfit with one piece of clothing. Dresses make you look put together even though it takes less effort than pants/skirt and a shirt.
5. A pair of comfy flats. I love flats. They are usually comfortable, still stylish, and you can dress them up or down. Invest in a good pair of nude flats that can easily pair with brown or black outfits.
Rothy’s are taking the world by storm! I haven’t personally tried them, but have heard great things.
Cole Haan flats are soo freaking comfy!
6. A button down shirt. This is a classic and classics never go out of style. No one will ever fault you for going basic with your solid black pants with a white button down shirt. But hey, be yourself and if you are into colors, get yourself whatever color you know inspires internal confidence.
Banana Republic has one with cute details.
Check out this one from Express.
7. A classy jacket. Puffer jackets are great ( I love them) but may not be the best choice when trying to look sophisticated and put together for a possible job or promotion. Look for a classic piece, like a trench coat, or just plain button down coat. I have a military style dark green coat which I love. I haven’t been able to part with it for years even as the buttons fall off. Because of this, I don’t wear this jacket to work events.
DKNY has a chic but warm one.
I’m really loving this one from Banana Republic.
8. A good quality purse/work bag. Make sure it has room for you to stay organized with your keys, wallet, random stuff ( I always have a crap load of random stuff in my purse).Will you have to carry your laptop? How about a lot of file folders? Try to assess what your job demands of you and make the purse fit the criteria.
I love this Madewell tote especially in brown.
Some other tips:
-You are spending a bit of money to invest in these items. But if you plan out the purchases, then you can save while spending. You need to invest in yourself before others will and that includes making sure you feel your best.
-Don’t worry about weight. If you’re like me, then you may think I’ll go shopping when I lose these last (fill in number here) pounds. Definitely, try to lose the pounds if thats your goal, but don’t delay professional growth because of appearance. Have you noticed strong females that command the room? Its all confidence. They know they are awesome, and they know that you should know it too. Instill that confidence in yourself. You are awesome and you got this.
-Take a friend or sibling with you. A second opinion is usually very useful.
Where to shop?
Nordstrom has their anniversary sale going on now!
J. Crew has a great sale as well.