Dress for Success

August 18, 2012 5:48:27 AM PDT
Thousands of people in the Chicago area who are unemployed know that a job interview is crucial. And how you look during the interview can make or break your chances of getting a job.

But what if you can't afford business attire? "Dress for Success," (www.dressforsuccess.org) an international not-for-profit organization with an office in Chicago, is here to help. It serves women in Chicago by providing free clothing and training for interviews and jobs. Each Dress for Success client receives one suit when she has a job interview and can return for a second suit or separates when she finds work.

Amanda E. Flott, Director of Operations at Dress for Success Worldwide-Central Office, and Jennifer Samuels, Lia Sophia (www.liasophia.com) Fashion Advisor, joined us in our ABC7 studio with several models to show off examples of the business outfits women can get through the organization.

Tips to 4 common company dress types

1. Corporate Classics
- companies with a business or business casual dress code
- keep your look basic and conservative for the first interview
- wear a conservative suit - a jacket with pants or a skirt - in dark gray or navy
- carry a briefcase or purse
- wear basic black pumps and simple, elegant jewelry

2. Business Casual
- skip the jacket after the first interview (or wear a more casual one)
- still dress a couple of notches above everyone else
- wear a dark skirt, crisp white blouse, statement necklace, good bag, and polished boots or pumps as weather-appropriate
- a shift dress with a cardigan or blazer work well

3. Start-up Style
- if everyone comes to work in jeans and flannels, don't show up in a black suit
- wear a nice pair of dark jeans, a simple shirt or sweater, ballet flats, and a small bag with enough room for a note pad, pen, and extra resumes
- a casual dress would be appropriate as well

4. Fashion-Industry Style
- pair one business-like piece (a pencil skirt, a smart blazer, or sleek trouser pants) with something more fun - a chic blouse and a great belt, for example
- you can also wear one (but only one) fabulous statement piece, like patent pumps, a collar necklace, or a bold watch

Dress for Success - Chicago Office
515 N. State Street
Suite 2340

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