THE INTERN DIARIES: Dress To Impress
Spexy Lady has watched all year what her favorite interns have been wearing. She loves eavesdropping on conversations about the interns' competition in the front office. And she's only too happy to share. Winners all-around are those who heeded the advice below.
Making the right impression can go along way in calming those First Job Jitters. Invariably Spexy Lady gets a call or e-mail from a sweet young thing or buffed up guy about what to wear to the interview.
Well, fashion friends, it's not flip flops, and it's not jeans unless they are the nice, un-ripped kind that pair well with a shirt and jacket, and the culture of the company is jeans-friendly.
It's not bare sandals you'd wear to the beach, and it's not that cute wrap top that dips low revealing cleavage best left for your nightlife. Forget those hot designer shorts, or those strappy dresses --even if it's 100 degrees outside.
What wears well is a smart suit, paired with a pretty shell or tank underneath, and a knee-hovering skirt or trim pant. Colors can make a memorable statement, but if you're hitting the buttoned up corporate world of finance, consulting, or marketing for a big brand, you can never go wrong with navy, the deep blues, or pewter grays with some stylish details and a pop of color. Choose quality fabrics, a crisp khaki, an Italian wool blend, and pay attention to little details like stitching on lapels that lays flat not puckered (a sure sign of a cheap suit). Stay away from crushable cottons and linens. Test out the crush factor by scrunching up the sleeve of a jacket or skirt/pant and see how badly it wrinkles in store. And according to recent research, avoid wearing read head-to-toe as a suit or dress. Red accents, as in a shell under a suit jacket, or accessories that complement your outfit in an understated way.
Not the suit type? Mix it up with a sleek sheath worn with a jacket over, or for more casual environs, slip a sweater over to cover bare arms. Where to go? Check out J. Crew (see photo insert) and Banana Republic--for Mad Men inspired sheaths and fit-and-flare dresses. Snag a good buy on websites like Asos, CWonder, or Neiman Marcus Last Call online.
A pretty pump, peep toes, or a sling-back shoe work with everything. Keep accessories simple, and be sure your legs look beautiful when bared...if not try a little leg makeup to tan them up and cover blemishes. Spexy Lady loves Sally Hansen's spray-on tan. Donna Karan also makes a great Nude hose that imitates bare legs.
Guys...it's not so complicated. You can never go wrong with a navy or khaki blazer, or one of the newer glen-plaid sport jackets with an open collar shirt for casual office settings, or coat and tie if you're hitting the high-finance world of work. Check out Kenneth Cole's tailored dress pants in gray, navy or black, or new-looking fine stripe. J. Crew has some of the best office-awesome suits and sports jackets for interviews, or priming yourself for a promotion.
Shoes--no sandals, no cowboy boots (unless that's the type of environment you're in!!). Look for a great tie oxford or loafer, even leather driving shoe -- Kenneth Cole and Banana Republic hit it on the nose. Be sure you buy the best quality shoe you can...some bosses judge their prospects by the shoes they wear! (True story!!!)
When in doubt err on the conservative side. It's better to look like you could own the company some day rather than a member of the mail room.