#016 The Interview Outfit (with Jane Springer)

The Interview Outfit (with Jane Springer)

Today, I interview stylist and life coach Jane Springer, and we are talking about how to dress for the interview.

The bottom line: how you dress for the interview depends largely on the industry, the specific company, and the position you’re applying for. (Nothing new here.)

The biggest mistake men make is not getting their interview suit properly tailored. It’s not possible to present yourself in the best possible light when your clothes are hanging on you (or conversely, too tight).

Guys, you have the opportunity to show your personality through your shirts and ties, but make sure those items are not the focus. (Stand out, but don’t stick out.)

Women, your errors come from skirts or dresses that are too short, or tops that provide the interviewer with way too much information.

When you’re purchasing a skirt or dress, sit down in front of a mirror; you’ll see what the interviewer will see.

For women, pants are always an option for the interview, and can be the best alternative if you’re not confident with your legs.

As with the men, fit is critical: make sure your pants don’t ride up or down as you move.

The best tip for making sure you are purchasing clothes that don’t easily wrinkle: while the clothes are still in the store on the hanger, bunch a handful of the fabric in your hand and count to 12. If the fabric comes out wrinkled, then you will be wrinkled in that outfit.

When purchasing your interview attire, go to the store during the day, during the week. You’ll get the best help and the most individualized attention at that time.

Going on line is also an alternative, especially if the online site has good size charts (and you measure yourself honestly).

You can also order one size up and one size down, with the intention of returning whatever doesn’t fit.

Utilizing the services of a stylist, like my guest Jane Springer, provides you with an expert who will give you an unbiased opinion – and who will gently push you outside your comfort zone.

This is particularly important if your appearance has changed significantly; if you’ve lost (or gained) significant weight, you may not have an accurate view of how you look today.

Shop around for the stores, departments within those stores, and brands that work for your body and your style. This upfront work will allow you to be more efficient in your shopping in the future.

For you guys who are building a work wardrobe from the ground up: invest in a suit or two (grey or navy blue); from here, you can take the slacks and combine with blazers, different shirts, and a variety of ties.

Also, a pair of flat-front khaki pants will serve you well.

Women building a work wardrobe should also start with a couple of suits in basic colors; you can also mix and match the pieces with other pieces.

Women, you also want to invest in a good pair of flat front black pants (hemmed to fit with the shoes you want to wear with them).

Men and women will both benefit from a pair of dark wash navy denim jeans for casual days. They should be tailored, without rips or tears. (Save your more fashion-forward jeans for the weekend.)

Women can then purchase a variety of blouses, scarves, and jewelry to personalize outfits (and make it look like you have more clothes than you actually do).

You can ABSOLUTELY incorporate your personality into your wardrobe, even in the interview. When you dress nicely, care about how you look, and incorporate your individuality, you’ll stand out (rather than stick out).

Jane’s offer for women: The Closet Gold Mine, available on her website at www.janespringer.com. The Closet Gold Mine gives you the top things every savvy professional woman should have in her wardrobe.

Men: Jane will have a similar offer on her website for you in the next couple of weeks, so check back then.

You can also request a 20-minute free session with Jane on that site.

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