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I’m a stickler for dressing the part. You know that saying “dress for the job you want, not the job you have“? It’s truer than you think; your personal dress code needs to scream “I am the perfect person for this.” And being able to adapt to your specific working culture is equally important. If you show up to your first day of ad agency work in a full suit when the rest of the office is donning jeans and Converse, you’re sticking out like a peacock in a pool of pigeons (but not in the good way).
Besides the whole adaptability factor of dressing to impress for work and beyond, you’ve got special, transient times in life that may require some creativity to really get a neck above the crowd.
I really really really really really really don’t like (is the song in your head now?) when folks just throw on a black n’ white suit and call it a day, paying no attention to the rest of the outfit or the overall look. If you’re going to wear a suit to look professional, please for the love of pizza, take a few minutes to do something to your hair and put on a teensy tiny bit of makeup or an accessory or two. Not doing so may result in you *literally* looking like you hurriedly rolled outta bed and into a suit; you’d be surprised at the power of a quick brush-through, a little mascara and concealer, and a nice necklace or pair of earrings at the very least! Bonus points for a swipe of lipstick.
Besides just genuinely looking better, I’m gonna put a stamp of guarantee on this baby: you will feel better throughout the day. Chances are, you’ll just have more confidence and feel better about yourself – which will show in your work – if you take a few extra minutes to go the extra mile for yourself.
Currently, I’m a strategy intern at a full-service branding agency, so suits are definitely *not* the dress code. On Friday, I wore jogger pants to work and it was glorious. The dress is technically “business casual,” but some folks take that to include jeans, others flip flops…and some wear a dress shirt everyday. When everyone’s interpretation of dress code slang is up in the air and a little bit different, it’s good to have a few staples in the wardrobe that work for on-the-fence descriptions (meaning you can get away with them whether it’s a little dressier, a little more laidback, or if you’re hopping to happy hour after work).
So, I’ve got a week’s worth of ideas for you to get an idea of what ad agency workwear is like…and what you can (and should) consider wearing for an internship that’s not on Wall Street.
Ew, already squirming from it. (Speaking of which, how’s your Monday going? Let me know in a comment down below!) I like adding a bright pop of color to a outfit, since it really helps liven the place up when everyone’s got a case of the Monday’s. This blazer from Apricot Lane is the perfect complement to a neutral plaid cotton dress from Target. Any sortof neutral print is a fabulous alternative to a basic suit – it’s still professional as can be, but it’s a personality-infused stylistic twist. And these black sling-back pumps are my current favorite – I scored them at Burlington for 20 buckaroos, but they look like they’re Kate Spade! Black patent leather until the day I die, I swear.
This. Dress. GUYS. It’s from an adorable shop called Fascino (which is local to PA…where my PA girls at???), I’m completely obsessed, and it’s literally perfect for work…and/or class, hanging out with girlfriends, datenight with the fiance, basically life. This fabric blend is so so soft and near wrinkle-proof, the fit n’ flare is flattering on virtually any figure, and the ivory lace Peter Pan collar is just the right touch of femininity. This is on repeat all summer for me, because it’s professional while still being playful and girly. I paired with one of my favorite pieces of footwear – ankle-collar sandals with a tribal block heel – and it’s ideal. I really think it’s one of those “gotta have it” pieces in your quest for the Audrey Hepburn winning Millennial wardrobe, so use code cominguproses for free shipping on anything you want from Fascino (but shop this “Wear me to Work” dress here).
On Wednesdays we wear pink, right? Of course we do. This lace overlay dress has got some cut-outs on the stomach, making it great to transition from day to night. I threw on a cobalt blazer with the front buttoned to keep it all PC and professional for work and threw on my metallic Betsey Johnson’s for the ultimate sweet finish.
This is one of my all-time favorite work outfits currently. I just scored these periwinkle pixie pants from J. Crew Factory for 10 DOLLARS, and I couldn’t love them more! They’re the perfect fit for work – flattering while still being a little looser and movable. On top, I paired with a plum linen dolman from Ann Taylor and a light handkerchief scarf to tie the colors together. There’s just something about mixing colors in summer that feels oh-so-good and right, you know?
FRIDAY! IT’S HERE! If you’d made it this far through the week (and post), congratulations…you’re one heckuvah human being. So for that, use code ROSES15 for 15% off your entire order at Ruby Claire Boutique – where this gorgeous, gorgeous navy maxi is from. Can we just talk about the *detail* on this for a sec? The openness on the bottom is such a feminine touch, giving a little separation and lightening up an otherwise harsh and heavier look. And the lace on the top? It’s so pretty and sexy!
What does your ideal weekday work wardrobe look like? How do you dress for your summer internship or job?
Grab a mug and let’s chat about it over coffee in the comments section. And if you’re really feeling on top of this Monday, I suggest you click here and get in on the fun that’s in store.