Women's suits

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sheD
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Re: Women's suits

Postby sheD » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:16 am

alicrimson wrote:
banjooooo wrote:What do you guys think about patent leather shoes for an interview? My matte black shoes are too high for an interview, so I'm trying to decide if I should get new ones or if patent would be fine.


I'm also interested in this. Particularly, if the rest of the outfit is very conservative and the heel is low. Something like this? Or is this too much?

http://shop.nordstrom.com/S/joan-david- ... tback=5408


I would personally be more wary of the bow than the patent on those. I think if the rest of the outfit is very conservative and you don't want to buy new shoes, patent is probably fine. If you're buying shoes specifically for OCI, though, I wouldn't buy patent.

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Ozymandias
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Ozymandias » Thu Jul 26, 2012 8:13 am

sheD wrote: I think if the rest of the outfit is very conservative and you don't want to buy new shoes, patent is probably fine. If you're buying shoes specifically for OCI, though, I wouldn't buy patent.

I agree with this.

petite chouette
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Re: Women's suits

Postby petite chouette » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:18 am

banjooooo wrote:What do you guys think about patent leather shoes for an interview? My matte black shoes are too high for an interview, so I'm trying to decide if I should get new ones or if patent would be fine.


This is probably because I was raised in the South, but it's pretty engrained (to me) that patent leather shoes are "party shoes" and not to be worn during the day. I would extend this to all practical situtions, and to be honest, if I was interiewing someone I would think they didn't understand dress customs if they wore patent leather. Since this is a situation so formal that people are expected to anachronistically wear nylons, I just wouldn't risk it.

However I was completely shocked by the "no silky materials" and "no jewel tones" comments upthread re: tops, so what do I know lol

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akili
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Re: Women's suits

Postby akili » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:24 am

I have to wear hose, ugh. Does anyone have a brand they recommend? I'm pretty fair skinned, if that makes a difference.

Also, how long does it usually take a tailor to do mild alterations (i.e. sleeve length, hemming pants)? I've been sick and haven't been able to take my suit in so I'm getting a little worried about timing.

formerbiglawpartner
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Re: Women's suits

Postby formerbiglawpartner » Thu Jul 26, 2012 9:52 am

A few comments here. As for alterations, you can always have them put a rush on your order, but plan on a week to 10 days typically. As for shoes, again, after spending so much on tuition, I would invest in a pair of "interview shoes" rather than wear patent to an interview. I would go with matte black or navy, closed toe, with a heel from 2- 3 inches. The heel doesn't have to be "chunky"--just not totally stiletto. Personally, I like the Cole Haan Air Violet pump or something along those lines. The heel is a bit higher for shorter women (3.5"), but it is a pretty pump and perfectly acceptable. The Corporette site has examples of less expensive pumps for interviews.

As for the "no slinky, shiny fabric" comment and no bright colors, remember that your initial interview is probably the most conservative you will ever dress. You want to make a good first impression, so why take any risk with your professional uniform? The guys with whom you are competing certainly aren't. If the interviewers are remembering what you wore rather than what was on your resume, your personality, and intellect, you are in trouble.

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Ozymandias
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Ozymandias » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:02 am

petite chouette wrote:
banjooooo wrote:What do you guys think about patent leather shoes for an interview? My matte black shoes are too high for an interview, so I'm trying to decide if I should get new ones or if patent would be fine.


This is probably because I was raised in the South, but it's pretty engrained (to me) that patent leather shoes are "party shoes" and not to be worn during the day. I would extend this to all practical situtions, and to be honest, if I was interiewing someone I would think they didn't understand dress customs if they wore patent leather. Since this is a situation so formal that people are expected to anachronistically wear nylons, I just wouldn't risk it.

However I was completely shocked by the "no silky materials" and "no jewel tones" comments upthread re: tops, so what do I know lol

I absolutely agree that patent = nighttime. I don't think it's a huge deal though. If someone already owns patent heels they like and nothing else, I don't think it's a big deal, but if you're going to get new OCI shoes, I'd definitely buy regular leather.

And the no silky/no jewel tones advice was somewhat exaggerated. Silky tops or bright tones can absolutely be inappropriate for an interview, but if you know what you're doing, they can also look great. I think this is one of those things where if someone has no idea what to wear, it's best to give super conservative and easy-to-follow rules. If you are familiar with interview dress and formal legal environments, there's a bit more leeway, so long as you still look extremely professional and put-together.

formerbiglawpartner
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Re: Women's suits

Postby formerbiglawpartner » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:15 am

I beg to disagree. Silk fabrics can be fine for interviews as long as they are not shiny. As for colors, will the guys be wearing purple or hot pink shirts to interviews? I think not. However, there is certainly more leeway on the actual color of your top as long as your suit is appropriately conservative. For an initial interview, if you still wish to depart from the norm, be absolutely sure your top doesn't look like something you would wear to a club after work.

As for the hosiery inquiry, I would recommend going to Nordstrom if you have one nearby and getting the associate to help you select a good color for you. Their in-house brand comes in a variety of colors and holds up fairly well. Be sure to have an extra pair on you during your interviews in case of a run! The weird thing is that you may not actually have to wear hose to work these days, depending on the firm's dress code, but you absolutely have to wear them for OCI and any callback interviews.

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Ozymandias
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Ozymandias » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:20 am

formerbiglawpartner wrote:I beg to disagree. Silk fabrics can be fine for interviews as long as they are not shiny. As for colors, will the guys be wearing purple or hot pink shirts to interviews? I think not. However, there is certainly more leeway on the actual color of your top as long as your suit is appropriately conservative. For an initial interview, if you still wish to depart from the norm, be absolutely sure your top doesn't look like something you would wear to a club after work.

I mean, I don't think we're disagreeing here. You can wear a nice silk shell with a little sheen and not have it be noticeably, club-level shiny (which would clearly be bad). And no one is advocating wearing hot pink - I think everyone in this thread has said to stray away from super bright, girly colors like that.

Also, those Cole Haan Air Violets are fantastic interview shoes. I own a pair myself.

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MarylandGirl
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Re: Women's suits

Postby MarylandGirl » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:25 am

So are brown suits a bad idea for OCI? I was thinking of wearing one a bit darker than this: http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/jm-c ... lotId%3D14

keg411
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Re: Women's suits

Postby keg411 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:29 am

MarylandGirl wrote:So are brown suits a bad idea for OCI? I was thinking of wearing one a bit darker than this: http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/jm-c ... lotId%3D14


That's a really conservative, dark brown. I personally think it should be fine.

Anonymous User
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:40 am

keg411 wrote:
MarylandGirl wrote:So are brown suits a bad idea for OCI? I was thinking of wearing one a bit darker than this: http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/jm-c ... lotId%3D14


That's a really conservative, dark brown. I personally think it should be fine.


There's some obnoxious comment in this thread that's like "you spend so much money on tuition don't shoot yourself in the foot by wearing an inappropriate color (brown)" or something like that.

I think that's bullshit though. My school's career services says to wear a dark neutral. Brown is not too light, too flashy, too patterned, etc. I think that's fine.

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MarylandGirl
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Re: Women's suits

Postby MarylandGirl » Thu Jul 26, 2012 10:42 am

keg411 wrote:
MarylandGirl wrote:So are brown suits a bad idea for OCI? I was thinking of wearing one a bit darker than this: http://www1.macys.com/shop/product/jm-c ... lotId%3D14


That's a really conservative, dark brown. I personally think it should be fine.


Thanks! :)

I feel weird in blue or black for some reason.

formerbiglawpartner
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Re: Women's suits

Postby formerbiglawpartner » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:25 am

Brown is a BAD color for an initial interview suit unless the brown is dark enough to be mistaken for black. I don't make the rules. If you want to feel confident that you are wearing an acceptable interview suit, then wear the traditional black, navy, or charcoal gray. I would wear a lighter gray suit long before I would wear anything in the "brown" family. Of course, I've been assuming we've been talking about Biglaw interviews exclusively. If you are interviewing for a public interest position of some sort or much smaller, regional law firms, you may be able get away with brown. IDK. I repeat. The purpose of the initial interview with Biglaw attorneys is to see whether you might belong in their club. If you don't know how to dress for the initial interview, then you probably don't belong. Naturally, whether or not to take that risk is totally up to you.

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glitter178
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Re: Women's suits

Postby glitter178 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:50 am

alicrimson wrote:
banjooooo wrote:What do you guys think about patent leather shoes for an interview? My matte black shoes are too high for an interview, so I'm trying to decide if I should get new ones or if patent would be fine.


I'm also interested in this. Particularly, if the rest of the outfit is very conservative and the heel is low. Something like this? Or is this too much?

http://shop.nordstrom.com/S/joan-david- ... tback=5408


May I suggest these? I just bought them and am happy with them. (For OCI, that is.)

http://www.amazon.com/Anne-Klein-Wyster ... anne+klein

crumbscoffee
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Re: Women's suits

Postby crumbscoffee » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:51 am

Anyone have good suggestions for heels? I like mine on the pointier side and without too thick of a heel.. so far everything I've been looking at is too pointy/too round (or way too high...) thanks!

keg411
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Re: Women's suits

Postby keg411 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:55 am

formerbiglawpartner wrote:Brown is a BAD color for an initial interview suit unless the brown is dark enough to be mistaken for black. I don't make the rules. If you want to feel confident that you are wearing an acceptable interview suit, then wear the traditional black, navy, or charcoal gray. I would wear a lighter gray suit long before I would wear anything in the "brown" family. Of course, I've been assuming we've been talking about Biglaw interviews exclusively. If you are interviewing for a public interest position of some sort or much smaller, regional law firms, you may be able get away with brown. IDK. I repeat. The purpose of the initial interview with Biglaw attorneys is to see whether you might belong in their club. If you don't know how to dress for the initial interview, then you probably don't belong. Naturally, whether or not to take that risk is totally up to you.


Did you look at the link? It is an extremely dark conservative-looking brown. I get that you're a partner and you've probably done hundreds of interviews, but I can't see anyone on the hiring committee at my firm dinging someon for wearing a very dark brown conservative suit. The suit posted definitely does NOT stand out in a bad way.

Honestly, where women go wrong is when they look sloppy or too casual or too "clubby". That was not the problem with the posted skirt suit.

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ilovesf
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Re: Women's suits

Postby ilovesf » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:55 am

crumbscoffee wrote:Anyone have good suggestions for heels? I like mine on the pointier side and without too thick of a heel.. so far everything I've been looking at is too pointy/too round (or way too high...) thanks!

I like my ivanka trump heels a lot.

keg411
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Re: Women's suits

Postby keg411 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 11:57 am

crumbscoffee wrote:Anyone have good suggestions for heels? I like mine on the pointier side and without too thick of a heel.. so far everything I've been looking at is too pointy/too round (or way too high...) thanks!


Try Nine West or Via Spiga brands. They both make nice, not-too-high pumps. (ilovesf's suggestion works too).

Anonymous User
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 26, 2012 12:00 pm

keg411 wrote:
formerbiglawpartner wrote:Brown is a BAD color for an initial interview suit unless the brown is dark enough to be mistaken for black. I don't make the rules. If you want to feel confident that you are wearing an acceptable interview suit, then wear the traditional black, navy, or charcoal gray. I would wear a lighter gray suit long before I would wear anything in the "brown" family. Of course, I've been assuming we've been talking about Biglaw interviews exclusively. If you are interviewing for a public interest position of some sort or much smaller, regional law firms, you may be able get away with brown. IDK. I repeat. The purpose of the initial interview with Biglaw attorneys is to see whether you might belong in their club. If you don't know how to dress for the initial interview, then you probably don't belong. Naturally, whether or not to take that risk is totally up to you.


Did you look at the link? It is an extremely dark conservative-looking brown. I get that you're a partner and you've probably done hundreds of interviews, but I can't see anyone on the hiring committee at my firm dinging someon for wearing a very dark brown conservative suit. The suit posted definitely does NOT stand out in a bad way.

Honestly, where women go wrong is when they look sloppy or too casual or too "clubby". That was not the problem with the posted skirt suit.


I agree with this. A lighter grey is more memorable than a dark brown. I wore brown to my mock and informational interviews, and when I asked if my attire would be appropriate for OCI, all three lawyers said yes (two partners and one associate). I even met a partner who said she preferred blouses in fuchsia to a white button down to show some personality. That one was an outlier, and I probably wouldn't go with fuschia, but the point is, you're not going to be auto-rejected for wearing a dark, conservative color that isn't the same dark, conservative color that a bunch of psycho rising 2Ls are all going to wear.

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swilson215
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Re: Women's suits

Postby swilson215 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 12:29 pm

Having talked to a significant amount of recruiters/hiring attorneys in the Dallas area, I think that the color of suit/shell you wear should depend not only on your skin tone but your location. In NY, Boston, LA, Chicago, etc. I would only wear black or navy blue suits with a light blue button down or shell.

Here in Texas, though, as well as parts of the South, as I've talked to attorneys from Atlanta and Charlotte, it's acceptable to add a little more color into the wardrobe. I've specifically been told that lighter gray suits are fine, and that jewel tone and small print shells (as long as they're not chartreuse or something really distracting) are okay, too.

One of my friends is actually a recruiting manager for a bigger firm here, and she said that when attorneys transfer from NY or Boston she always has to take them shopping to show them that adding color in to their wardrobe is acceptable here.

That being said, I'm still erring on the side of conservative for screening interviews. I'll probably wear a black or light gray suit (skirt, obviously) with a light blue button down or shell, low Vince Camuto black matte leather (NO patent) heels, and hair half up half down. For any CBs I'll put in a pop of color with the blouse.

formerbiglawpartner
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Re: Women's suits

Postby formerbiglawpartner » Thu Jul 26, 2012 12:32 pm

I didn't suggest that brown=auto reject. It is just not optimum for an initial interview which is a formal setting. I agree that looking unkempt or "clubby" would be far worse, of course.

Perhaps a bit about my background would help clarify my remarks. I worked for over two decades at a V50 firm where I was the first woman partner in my transactional practice area. Accordingly, I did A LOT of interviews while at my firm. Also, I had no one upstream to give me advice or pointers when I was a law student or young associate, so I feel compelled to "give back" on this forum. I am giving you the same advice I gave my own kid who landed a V10 clerkship, btw.

As for your interview outfit, think of it as being the frame for you as the painting. You want them to remember you after the interview--not what you wore. Accordingly, the closer you stick to the uniform, the better. In any event, good luck to all of you during this stressful interview season.

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swilson215
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Re: Women's suits

Postby swilson215 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:23 pm

so general consensus is pantyhose is a must, hair either pulled back or half-back, low- to mid-height heels, even if you're tall, and navy black, blue, or charcoal gray skirt suits are the best/most conservative screener choices, right?

For whoever was posting about being tall and busty, check out banana's "stretch" suit separates. They're not really stretchy, but they're better for bustier girls.

Anonymous User
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Anonymous User » Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:58 pm

What about the no patent rule when we're talking about shoes with a dark navy blue suit. I have patent nude colored heels, that I already owned (these (LinkRemoved), the heel is the same color as the shoe on my pair).

I just can't bring myself to wear black leather (non patent) shoes with a dark navy blue suit. And this pair matches my skin tone VERY well, almost looks like I'm not wearing shoes. Acceptable?

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Ozymandias
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Re: Women's suits

Postby Ozymandias » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:00 pm

Anonymous User wrote:What about the no patent rule when we're talking about shoes with a dark navy blue suit. I have patent nude colored heels, that I already owned (these (LinkRemoved), the heel is the same color as the shoe on my pair).

I just can't bring myself to wear black leather (non patent) shoes with a dark navy blue suit. And this pair matches my skin tone VERY well, almost looks like I'm not wearing shoes. Acceptable?

If you don't want to buy a new pair, those will be fine. If you don't mind getting a new pair, I prefer matte nude.

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swilson215
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Re: Women's suits

Postby swilson215 » Thu Jul 26, 2012 2:16 pm

Ozymandias wrote:If you don't want to buy a new pair, those will be fine. If you don't mind getting a new pair, I prefer matte nude.


Agreed. Patent nude is very different from patent black. I love patent leather shoes, but patent black are a little too "party" for an interview, IMO.




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