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What do you wear to work and to interviews?

almost 3 years ago from , UI Designer

If you work in a corporate environment do you dress corporate? Jeans and sneakers? Nice shirt and leather shoes (for men) or heels (for women)?

How about for interviews?

In my last role in a corporate setting, the development team dressed very sloppy while everyone else took pride in how they looked. I personally like to dress up a little to help separate my work life from my personal life, but I also like to be comfortable.

Also where do you shop?

19 comments

  • Dan Christian, almost 3 years ago

    Should designers wear clothes?

    12 points
  • Andrew LeeAndrew Lee, almost 3 years ago (edited almost 3 years ago )

    Get 3-4 colored Chino pants (because I hate jeans), a variety of long sleeve collared button down shirts (solid colors and patterns, both), a pair of light brown boots, a pair of classic sneakers (think Adidas white shell tops, or ), a pair of slightly-not-corporate-work-appropriate sneakers if you are into it (Air Max Tavas is my favorite right now), 1-2 plain white t-shirts, a cardigan, and 3-4 graphic tee shirts.

    With this, you've got a mix of items that all play well that you can flex to be "very casual" all the way up to "semi-formal". Dress down for Fridays, or days that you just aren't feeling it, and dress up for presentation days or interviews.

    I've had success with pants from Banana Republic and Uniqlo, though I always need to get them tailored to fit me... More of a Me problem than a brand problem. Basic shirts you can get from Uniqlo, Banana, H&M, or if you are in to dropping a few more coins you could go with Untuckit, J.Crew or Bonobos-esque places... I always prefer Nikes (Foot Locker has a selection that resonates with me), and for boots, look to Clarks or Camper... There are some cheaper options on the boots, for sure, but I'm new to boots and lack experience with a lot of brands.

    And so concludes my 2 years worth of Googling men's fashion.

    Good luck? :)

    3 points
  • Dirk HCM van BoxtelDirk HCM van Boxtel, almost 3 years ago

    Kinda depends what I feel like that day. Mostly button up shirts these days, always jeans, sometimes SB Dunks, most of the time dress shoes.

    Mostly long sleeve dress shirts but always with the sleeves rolled up, sometimes short sleeve ones.

    Leather belt always matches the dress shoes and watch so that I can tuck them in when it suits the shirt.

    That's pretty much the only rules I have.

    1 point
  • Charles LamCharles Lam, almost 3 years ago

    Comme des Garcons

    1 point
  • Andy Warburton, almost 3 years ago (edited almost 3 years ago )

    I work in scruffy jeans, a nerdy t-shirt and often a hoodie (depending on season) and a pair of comfy sneakers (chucks etc).

    When I interviewed for this job I wore a new pair of jeans, a pair of chucks and a plain black t-shirt with long sleeves. I don't imagine me ever applying for the kind of company that requires shirts and ties so this would be the kind of thing I wear to any interview.

    I should mention, I work at Booking.com. We employ about 15,000 people around the world. I work closely with people from many cultures and various roles around the company. We almost exclusively dress in whatever we are comfy in, for some that is a smart shirt, but you'll almost never see anyone in a suit.

    0 points
  • Noah C, almost 3 years ago

    You wear all-black if you're a designer and all of your clothes have to be designer . . .

    I just wear black jeans, black button-down shirt and sneakers/dress-shoes. Maybe wear a decent jacket (if weather permits).

    It also depends on where you interview. If its a place like McKinsey & Company, you want to dress business-casual.

    0 points
  • Art VandelayArt Vandelay, almost 3 years ago

    An older co-worker asked me this question once and I responded with: "a button down shirt, some nice pants and nice shoes". Which, in NYC often means biz casual to some degree.

    He then followed up with this question: "Would you wear that to work everyday?". I Immediately replied with "of course not!". To which he replied, "Then why wear something to an interview you wouldn't be comfortable wearing everyday and potentially misrepresent yourself or provide false evidence of who you are?"

    To that question I had no answer and to that day I wear some variation of what I'd wear everyday to work. Depending on the level of interview (first vs third round) I'll wear a variety of casual-ish button down shirts, sneakers and denim. That is what I'll wear to work and I wouldn't work at a place that required otherwise.

    0 points
    • barry saundersbarry saunders, almost 3 years ago

      most workplaces expect more formal clothing for client meetings than everyday wear, an interview is obviously analogous - you want to create a good impression.

      Within reason, of course, don't turn up in a tie.

      0 points
      • Art VandelayArt Vandelay, almost 3 years ago

        Yea. I brought those same points to the conversation with this old coworker and he had some solid rebuttals to those points, I forget what they were but oh well. Point is, if you can make a good impression with your person more so than your clothes than you're better off.

        0 points
        • barry saundersbarry saunders, almost 3 years ago

          Depends where you work. If you're at an agency that supports banks and farming startups, you need a varied wardrobe.

          0 points
  • Jake wetton, almost 3 years ago

    I've always just gone with what represents me as a designer, clean cut and minimal. A lot of the time i would put on a shirt as i think it's nice to show you've made an effort but i've been at my current design position for 3 years and the last time i wore a shirt was that interview...

    Checkout some other tips on this site for designers to help http://tinyurl.com/j9f2cdy

    0 points
  • Freckley Freckleson, almost 3 years ago

    Ladies?

    0 points
    • Jessa ClarkJessa Clark, almost 3 years ago (edited almost 3 years ago )

      I have a strict, I don't dress up for interviews rule. In SF, it's fine. For me that usually means denim and a sweater and either chucks or boots depending on the weather.

      0 points
  • Zach HubbardZach Hubbard, almost 3 years ago

    I work in a corporate environment at a defense/aerospace company. I wear sneakers, chinos (sometimes jeans), and button downs (tucked in about 50% of the time). I will wear t-shirts (if it's hot out), or maybe even a jersey (Chicago Cubs/Blackhawks when it's a big game) on rare occasions. I wear a lot of black, gray, and navy blue.

    When I present to clients/VPs, I'm wearing a blazer, tie, and slacks or a suit. I keep a shirt, shoes, and blazer in my office just in case a client decides to pop-in that day.

    But most of the time, I'm like, I'm a designer, I don't need to dress in a suit like the VPs, so I keep it fairly casual but ready to dress up in a moments notice.

    I shop at Bonobos and LL Bean mainly. Sometimes my girlfriend will buy me more 'designer' clothes.

    0 points
    • Luke Bugbee, almost 3 years ago

      Hey! I was considering interviewing for a UX role at Northrup this past summer but was scared away by the corporate environment. How has it been for you?

      0 points
      • Zach HubbardZach Hubbard, almost 3 years ago

        Well, we were probably looking at that same opening then. UX & design thinking is a new concept to Northrop Grumman. But it's got full support from the executive staff and nearly everyone here. All the engineers are excited too. So, lots of opportunities to lead.

        The corporate environment isn't that corporate, but it definitely isn't a start up/agency feel. They even gave me money to redesign some workplaces to give it more of a 'designer' feel instead of cubicles.

        It's a big push for design and the work is phenomenal. I never thought I'd be able to design stuff like this (can't talk about it). I thought I'd stuck with eCommerce sites, or best case scenario at Google/Facebook.

        If you want to design something with amazing capabilities, I don't think there are many companies doing this.

        0 points
  • barry saundersbarry saunders, almost 3 years ago

    I work at an AgTech startup, so I have a nice mix of button-up shirts, polo shirts, jeans and farm boots. Sneakers for when I'm in the office, RM Williams for when I'm in the cattleyard.

    0 points
  • Daniel GoldenDaniel Golden, almost 3 years ago

    Suit & Tie

    0 points