Hannah Baker at The Daily Muse brought in fashion writer Kristyn Schiavone for some great advice on working with company dress codes and maintaining your style. Here’s Kristyn’s advice on what to wear on your first day of work:
Let’s assume that when you went in for the interview, you found that it wasn’t a suit-every-day kind of place. Very few offices these days are, and you can often tell right away. Where it gets tricky is when people appear to be very casual—even then, you don’t want to wear jeans on your first day. Or, when everyone looks business casual, but you’re not sure about the little things (like whether open-toe shoes are off-limits).
I think a colorful pencil skirt, patterned blouse, closed-toe pumps, and a piece of statement jewelry is perfect for the first day on the job. Or, you can color-block and pair a bright skirt with a shirt in a different color. If you’re not sure about how conservative the office is, you can pair a skirt in a neutral (such as blush) with a subtle pattern (like a black and white Swiss dot top).
For pumps, I always go with nude, because they match everything. However, if you don’t want your ensemble to be totally composed of neutral hues, add a dash of color with your shoes.
You may have a perfect outfit in mind, but your dream outfit (a la Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City) may not blend well with your new work environment. The way you present yourself in a professional setting matters and preparation is key. Check out the company’s website to see what other associates are wearing. If you still have no idea, contact an associate working in your department via LinkedIn for some advice. If all else fails, contact the interviewer or HR department to get an idea of what you should wear. I believe it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed. After your first day of work you should have a better idea of what to wear going forward. Read more of Kristyn’s advice here and check out some additional outfit ideas below.