The New Rules of What to Wear to an Interview
Throw on a smart blazer (which conveys authority); it can also be taken off if you're feeling overdressed. "Don't forget to cut the zigzag thread stitched over pockets or the vent in a new jacket, skirt or pair of pants," says Griffin. If you agonize over coordinating separates, try purchasing a piece that comes already mixed and matched (like this two-in-one dress from the Limited that gives the illusion of a top and skirt). For law firms or investment banks, go with a suit. You'll want to avoid trendier pieces—mesh tops or pajama-inspired tops—even if your interview is at a dot-com or creative ad agency. (For those, choose one of the above tops and pair it with dark denim.)
Not ready to take the leap from charcoal to chartreuse? Think about a different, less-mournful neutral—like this season's sophisticated navy. Glassman says it flatters almost any skin tone and can be paired with everything from fuchsia to camel.
Photo: Marko Metzinger/Studio D
When it comes to shoes, closed toe is the best way to go (even in the summer), says Griffin. Yours should be scuff-free but also comfortable (Rockport and Cole Haan both incorporate sneaker technology into their heels). Walking a few blocks to a restaurant for lunch is often part of the interview at many law firms or financial institutions. While the Duchess of Cambridge (Kate Middleton) may be bringing back buff hose one royal skirt suit at a time, if you're interviewing in a more conservative environment (like a bank or government office) where stockings are a must, Glassman says they should match your shoes for a leg-lengthening effect.
Next: How to wear lace to the office