Tuesday, January 26, 2010

My very first request: A post-college wardrobe

My cousin Michelle has asked my opinon on how to go from college student in a t-shirt to someone who has to wear actual pants and shoes to work every day.  I wish I had known what I know now back when I was frantically buying clothes for my first real agency job waaaay back in 2005: get nice basics that fit and be trendy with your jewelry. 

If I were to repeat that shopping trip, here is what I would get:

All you really need in terms of pants are black, gray and dark denim trouser jeans for Friday's - or everyday if you work in a casual office like mine.  Then, find knee length skirts in dark denim and black.  (The knee length is important... nothing says 'my first job' like a too short skirt and heels)

For tops, you will definitely need a white 3/4 sleeve button down and a thin knit black sweater.  The sweater should be your splurge since it will get lots of wear and you don't want it to pill or fade.  Then, look for 6-7  well made, 3/4 sleeve knits and (of course) cardigans in jewel tones.  These pieces tend to work year round, never look dated, and you can wear them with any of the pants/skirts above.  Get 2 slim fitting, non-ribbed tanks in both black and white for layering. 

The items above can make about almost a month of outfits, which is far more than you need since nobody remembers what you wear anyway.  (Really, they don't)

Then, to stand out, buy interesting jewelry from affordable chains like Forever 21, Aldo, The Limited (they offer buy one get one free a lot), Kohl's, and Martin&Osa.  Think long necklaces, interesting bracelets, and earrings that people will notice as you're walking up to them.  (I actually have the last bracelet pictured, and it was $4!)


  1. ohhhh, I love this. Thanks for the pictures. This is very useful for me too. I'll be working in the somewhat near future and my wardrobe got very dated during my 10 year "break" from work. Any leads on VERY comfortable, yet stylish, shoes would be greatly appreciated!



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