Maybe you are in charge of Singapore’s sovereign wealth. Maybe you are paid enough to just arrive at the Theory flagship store or the floor of Barney’s where they keep all the Akris and say “dress me.” If this is the case, good for you, and if you are looking for an assistant I am a quick learner with lots of communication skills. But if this does not describe your situation, you might instead be an academic, a baby lawyer, or another profession where you are expected to look like an adult but are not paid enough to adequately outfit yourself. In academic world, conference season is right around the corner; and unlike “holiday party season” you actually might need a new outfit for these events. The golden rules of dressing like an adult (synthesized from my professional mentors, the Professor is In, and TV) are:
1. Your clothes must fit you, thus you must use a tailor. You are ten times more likely to have a perfect fit if you buy things that fit your most difficult spots and then bring the rest in.
2. You look more confident if your clothes show some connection to your actual everyday style.
3. You should look like Alicia Florrick, Olivia Pope, or Leslie Knope
Florrick: your going to need some blazers with hook and eye closures, or even better ZIPPERS!
Florrick tends to rock matching suits, but they all look great because they are super tailored.
Pope never met a double breasted blazer she didn’t like. And a flowy pant. But most importantly, Olivia Pope knows that wearing light colors (your dove grey, your cream) can look very strong.
And finally Ms. Knope. She kind of looks like a school teacher, but she also makes sure her frilly blouses and bold color choices are always anchored by conservative blazers. And these are not the boys-department husky blazers of Ms. Lemon.
So here is my solution for this fall’s professional events:
This “Aberdeen Jacket” looks kind of like something I would actually wear everyday, but fancy enough to pass as professional. I will be pairing it with my fancy black heel, my only fancy shirt, and a J.Crew pencil skirt (which will need to be tailored so that it sits higher on my waist and actually matches my hip to waist ratio).