Graduation is coming up fast and if you’re looking for a job right away you’ll be going on countless interviews. I actually had an interview last week and my personal biggest worry (after I organize my portfolio and look at some pre-interview practice questions) is always what I’m going to wear! In order to feel confident going to an interview, it is important to feel good about what’s on the outside as well as what’s on the inside. You need to prepare mentally as well as physically. Will you wear nice pants or a skirt? Can you wear heels without walking like a robot? Your first impression is everything! Whether you like it or not, employers judge what they see before they ask the questions to judge what they hear. So, what did I wear for my first “real” job interview?
(Sorry, it is an instagram “selfie”)
My go-to outfit for an interview is a blazer with a nice pair of dress pants. That’s what I feel most comfortable in while still looking professional. I wore this tan/gold colored blazer from Victoria’s Secret with a ruffled shirt from the Loft underneath. It is important to wear neutral, sophisticated, simple items of clothing rather than something loud or busy. This ruffled shirt I’m wearing does have a pattern to it but under the blazer you can only see a small amount of it. Plus, this shirt has muted, neutral colors.
I wore black dress pants from Express with this top. It is also very important to make sure if you are wearing dress pants that they FIT YOU. Be picky when shopping for dress pants. It will look unprofessional if they are too tight or too loose. My dress pants are usually a little too long unless I can find my size in a “short” pant. These black Express pants I wore are not “short” ones so they were a little long. My solution to that was to wear a little black heel. I don’t usually wear heels very often so I made sure they were a short heel and I practiced walking in them beforehand. If you aren’t sure, ask someone how you look walking in them.
These are the little black Ralph Lauren heels I wore. They have about a 2 1/2 inch heel so it was just enough so that my pants didn’t drag on the ground.
Last but not least, be careful about what jewelry you wear. In my opinion, don’t wear anything that jingles a lot, or is too big or super sparkly. The necklace I wore for this interview is from Target and it has a little shimmer but it’s not super sparkly. It fits in with the neckline of the shirt I wore, so they look good together. I wore small earrings that were a little sparkly so they went well with my necklace. As far as bracelets go, I simply wore my Alex and Ani bracelet that I wear basically everyday.
So you have a sense of what I like to wear on an interview; here are some other options:
I imagine this outfit with an updo. A pencil skirt with a button down is a great look for the office. You could wear a bigger heel with this outfit but I think a lower heel looks more professional.
You can pull off a dress in an office setting. It should be no shorter than right above your knee, and shouldn’t have any weird cutouts or cleavage showing. A blazer will work with a dress if it’s short enough that the bottom edge hits the waistline of the dress.