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How You Dress Depends on What Type of Job You Want

How You Dress Depends on What Type of Job You Want

The Commercial Appeal

December 03, 2009

Interviewing at Regions Bank is a different story. A woman hoping to become a branch manager there should wear a suit or conservative dress and pumps, said Brigitta Phillips, senior recruiter in human resources. A man should wear a suit and tie or at least a sport coat, slacks and a tie.

Appropriate dress for a teller would be a conservative blouse, twin set, skirt and slacks and flats or conservative boots. Male tellers must wear a shirt, tie and slacks every day except casual Fridays, although some choose to wear suits and they look quite nice, she said.

Denim isn’t allowed even on casual Fridays, said Phillips, and tattoos and piercings (except ear piercings for women) must not be visible.

Dressing to be employed is an issue Hudson understands personally. She worked for Macy’s in Memphis (formerly Goldsmith’s and Macy’s-Goldsmith’s) for almost 18 years styling clothes for fashion shows, TV and newspapers until she was laid off in April along with many others nationwide in a consolidation of Macy’s regional offices.

“For a bank or corporation, don’t think you have to buy a suit,” said Hudson. She prefers to create a suit look with a nicely coordinated jacket and skirt in conservative colors such as black, brown, navy or gray. Pants are not for interviews, she said, but you should be thinking down the road and pair the interview jacket with pants after you get the job to extend your wardrobe.

For the conservative look, Hudson chose a stylish gray suit by Nine West with piped trim and a lively silk graphic print blouse that mixed gray and gold. It’s accessorized with a moderate-sized tailored clutch bag in plum, closed-toe Mary Jane-style high heels and subdued pewter jewelry. You should consider wearing stockings, she said, either nude sheer hose or dark opaque stockings, but nothing patterned.

For a more stylish look suitable for all but the most conservative jobs, Hudson topped a knit dress with a tweed short coat enlivened with metallic threads and its own wide belt. Accessories were a structured but showy Kate Spade quilted bag; over-sized pearl and chain jewelry; opaque stockings and croc-patterned platform pumps.

Hudson, a mother of two, has lately realized the necessity of looking stylish even when running to the grocery. For example, she picked up a two-day job she never anticipated from a modeling agency that knew her style and booked her as a model in a resort ad campaign for a Harrah’s publication.

“You think about networking as something you do when you have job,” she said. “But your everyday experience can be your networking.”

Avoid athletic gear such as warm-up suits and sneakers, she said. Clean, simple boot cut jeans, with a jacket or blazer and boots, flats or loafers work well for almost everyone, she said. She added a bit of style to the Michael Kors jeans here by layering a Tommy Hilfiger sweater vest and striped shirt and topping them with a metallic belt and adding a large, colorful bag by Jessica Simpson and BCBG boots.