Post # 1
I bought my first suit to use for a job interview! The job which I am applying for does not require suits to be worn on a daily basis, but supposedly it is a good idea to wear a suit for the interview. I bought the pants and jacket from a BCBG Factory Store. I can’t find a picture of the jacket online (don’t know the name of it), but it’s a short 1-button jacket and not a typical style (it’s unique!). The pants are the Carla slim flare: http://piperlime.gap.com/Asset_Archive/PLWeb/Assets/Product/740/740358/big/pl740358-00vliv01.jpg
They are the most comfortable pants I have ever worn! I was very hesitant about buying and wearing a suit as I feel it is very masculine– I much prefer to wear skirts and feminine tops. This is a big step for me and I am still uneasy about it, but hopefully you can give me some supportive words to help me feel more comfortable in my new suit!
How many of you wear suits for your job or otherwise? How do you maintain a balance between wearing a suit and having a feminine appearance, but most importantly– feeling feminine? I hope I don’t offend anyone with this post, but this really is difficult for me, personally!
Post # 3
Maybe I’m not the very best person to reply, since I’m not particularly feminine and pretty happy about that, but I do like to look somewhat feminine when I wear a suit. I have to wear one a couple of times a month for work. I have broad shoulders and muscular upper arms, so yeah, definitely a problem with my body type.
I try to make sure my suit is well-tailored ESPECIALLY in the waist. That helps a lot… Wearing a collared shirt 1-2 buttons open (not cleavage level, but not all the way up) with a short necklace underneath. I don’t have any satiny-type shirts, but maybe a satin or silk-like collared shirt instead of one made of a menswear fabric. Wear heels or flats that aren’t Oxford-like… something that in no way resembles a mens’ shoe.
The tailoring is the main thing, though. It should follow your shape, rather than the straight up and down shape of a man. If you already have larger shoulders, make sure it doesn’t have shoulder pads in. Then add jewelry, etc, and you’ll look as feminine as you want.
EDIT – oh and I should add that it’s definitely a good idea to wear a suit to a job interview. There’s very few jobs for which that’s a bad idea… any office-type job in New York, I would definitely go suit, though.
Post # 4
There are a lot of cute feminine suits out there. For a job interview, I tend to wear a collared shirt underneath but otherwise, I like to wear a solid silk or cotton color t-shirt and a fun necklace. I used to do a lot of conferences for work which required suits but we re not terribly conservative. I also have a few skirt suits which are more feminine. I would agree that tailoring can really make a difference and a good fitting jacket makes all the difference. However, if you are in an industry that is not so conservative (so not finance or accounting) you can really take advantage of the more stylish options and have fun with the shirt and acessories. I really like Macy’s for suits for their selection of styles and The Limited sells a “travel suit” which was the only washable wrinklefree suit I found and mine has held up really well on business trips and in my washer.
Post # 5
I usually try to wear something that is fancier that what is required every day on the job. It is better to dress up too much than to dress down and risk being looked down upon! So great job with the suit! I agree that making sure that it is tailored well, I feel like when it nips in properly at the waist it gives your body a great curvy shape even though you are wearing pants.
Post # 6
Also, I find wearing heels and a little bit of jewelry – maybe a necklace or earrings – can also help you to feel more feminine. And trust me, if you end up in a position where you have to wear a suit all the time, you’ll get comfortable with it eventually.
Post # 7
Yes I agree with the heels for sure, be careful with your jewelry though. If the company is more conservative, you want to have less flashy jewelry on.
Post # 8
I love love to wear suits! I love the way they can make you feel –instantly smart, sexy and powerful. I often wear the skirt suit, which I think is very feminine, but you can make a pant suit more feminine by wearing a great pair of heels, a cute blouse underneath the jacket, or a statement necklace that is big and chunky.
BUT! Don’t do any of this for a conservative job interview! If that is the interview you have, a standard button down and pearls is the only way to go. You want to look groomed and polished, and keep the focus on your job qualifications, not on your wardrobe.
Post # 9
I have to wear a suit for my job (clerking for a federal court judge). A well-tailored suit is essential. You don’t want it to be baggy or loose anywhere. Also, there are SO many feminine shirts to wear underneath. Ruffles are really in right now, so ruffles around the collar of a shirt look very nice. Pleats around the collar look nice as well. I also get brighter colored shirts, not just white button down shirts. I also like to spice things up with some awesome pumps. I wear black ones sometimes, but I try to get colored ones with cool bows or tectures.
Post # 10
I agree with the tailoring of the suit…if it fits right it will look REALLY nice on you…and pumps and a good pearl necklace are always a staple. Congratulations and good luck!
EDIT: If you can find a skirt to match you can always interchange the pants for the skirt…I have a couple of Calvin Klein pantsuits that I have found the skirts to.
Post # 11
Thank you so much everyone for the advice and support! It’s great to hear that a bunch of you wear suits (and like wearing them!) and that you have many different ways to make the suit more feminine.
I think the suit is well-tailored as it hugs my body nicely. I did try on some suits that I absolutely hated because I felt like I looked like a man.
I am not applying for a very conservative type of job, so I think I will try a colored shirt but maybe just a simple pearl necklace and earrings. I bought a pair of pumps to go with it as well, that have a pointed toe. I have never worn pointed toe shoes before so that is also something new for me! Perhaps I am making this harder for myself by trying so many things outside of my comfort zone at once.
I do have one more question, though. I will not be wearing a button-down shirt, as it really is unnecessary for the job I’m applying for. (I would tell you what kind of job it is, but I don’t like putting too many things to identify me on the internet.) Assuming then that I’d be wearing just a regular type of shirt, is it still necessary for it to be tucked in? I am asking because, as I said, the jacket is short, and I feel like when the shirt is also tucked in that there is something missing in between the jacket and the pants? But again, I have never worn or owned a suit before so I really don’t know!
Post # 12
Absolutely tuck in your shirt – an interview is about the only time I’d do this, but there’s not supposed to be something hanging out under the jacket! I can’t picture anything other than a button down blouse under a suit jacket though. Don’t you need a collar to go over the suit collar? What if you want to take off the jacket? it seems like a button down shirt would look a bit more formal in that case.
Post # 13
Definitely tuck the shirt in. I hardly ever wear collared shirts with my suits, but I definitely tuck them in.
Post # 14
Sounds like a flowy, silky blouse would be perfect then. They look very feminine & stylish, and work well tucked in. See here for an example: http://bananarepublic.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=16814&vid=1&pid=719820
or this: http://bananarepublic.gap.com/browse/product.do?cid=50153&vid=1&pid=719831
Post # 15
I actually use to be an acting area manager for one of Max Azria’s sister companies (designer for BCBG) I’ve met a lot of his buyers and designers. His clothes are so great AND Comfortable, so great choice!!
First off, I love suits. To me I feel more confident and powerful when I am wearing a nice tailored pair of pants. The best part about purchasing a great full suit, is that you can make sooooo many different looks with them. Wear the pants alone with a great top or wear your jacket with a great pair of jeans and heels. If and when I tuck my shirt in the pants, I like to wear a great belt with it. I just feel like it really polishes the look. However, I am a little different as far as some of the other posters. I don’t feel like you need to tuck in your shirt when you wear the whole ensemble together. But also, it really does depend on the top that you’re wearing.
Post # 16
Just wanted to say yes, that I would tuck the shirt under the suit if it’s a button up. If it’s a blouse that won’t really stay tucked then I would leave it untucked. Just try it tucked and untucked and you’ll be able to pick out what looks right for the type of shirt.
Also, I never wear a suit for my job, but I’ve always worn it when I went on interviews. It sometimes does feel awkward because I interview at places and the other people there are wearing jeans. However, it’s better to be over dressed so it looks like you are taking things seriously.