Monday, February 06, 2012

Office Wear Conundrum

What does a twenty-five year old, part-time tomboy even wear to the office? Shockingly, this was about my biggest concern. I went to the interview in black skinny jeans and a blue cable-knit sweater over a ribbed tank-top. To be fair, I didn't understand that it was supposed to be the official interview.

I'd never filled out a personality quiz for a job before. Is that standard procedure these days?

My second worry? That being a full-time student with a part-time job would ruin the rest of this experience, not to mention my relationship. Oh, it would be fine at first, but you probably know what it's like when deadlines and finals come around.

When I was seventeen my mother told me to apply at the bank. I realized that days in pumps and pinstriped pants would kill me.

Yesterday I visited my farm. I let the calves suck my fingers and showed my boyfriend around our tri-sided parlour. I was a different person back then. But, more than that... I think... was that I was living one part of me. I can't do everything.

So now, I have a desk, and a mac, and staff meetings. I still wear jeans. Sometimes even hiking boots. I was pleased to learn that my co-workers never wear heels or blouses. A few visits to the op shops, and I'm set to go with some cleaned up shirts and a pair of flats. I dropped two courses. Because school was supposed to be fun. Life matters.

I'm not sure how being a staff-writer and editorial contributor will fit me, but I'm excited to find out. Maybe one day I'll visit to show my kids around, and marvel that I was once this person. Meanwhile, the challenge will be enough to keep me around, for the first time in a while. I'll be pretending I know what I'm doing and that I'm quite used to this person.

And if you have any insight, I'm still open to ideas for what 25 year old, part time tomboys should be wearing to the office.


Jill said...

I'm 25 also. I just got a job as a website content writer and was surprised at the extremely lax dress code. I can now wear jeans, casual dresses and sweaters. At my last job, I had to either wear dress pants, skirts or dressy dresses and blouses/button-ups. I think it's hard for 20-somethings to still look young and fashionable when they have to dress like this. I'd recommend getting a good pair of black dress pants, khakis, gray dress pants, and pencil skirts. :) Oh, and fun shoes! Flats and wedges are my fave for work, and dressy boots in winter.

Atley said...

hot dog! you found a job where you can wear jeans? You found a dream job! keep it! haha. make it your living!

Penny Lane said...

You are lucky because nowadays business wear is not what it used to be. Especially in a creative career, things are more lax. There is no need for pencil skirts and heels anymore. Business casual, or business in general does nto need to be stuffy. Some suggestions, dark jeans that are fitted, no baggy jeans and they should not have any sort of fading or something like that, put a tank top on and a blazer and you are set. Blazers are great, they are comfortable and can really make an outfit so much better. Even a nice skirt a tucked in tee and a blazer can work, with some comfy flats. It is not all bad, have fun with it!

Kris said...

Yay. Thanks ladies, very helpful! I'm thinking I should get myself a blazer, they look reasonable. I'm already doing the whole dressy boot thing (most days) but some wedges would be great when spring comes around!

Ann Jaimi Alexander said...

I'm a full time student battling a TWO part time jobs! so I feel ya girl!
Getting dressed in the mornings is a killer - why can't we just wear sweats?!
I love wearing tights with long tops.. comfy, easy and versatile. Pair it up with scarves and/or fun hats. add a bit of long necklaces and chunky bracelets if you like.
Boyfriend blazers are also great cuz they aren't stiff.

hope that helps!

Christy said...

Hey Kris! I just saw your comment on my blog about my new running shoes! The whole gait analysis is actually free! The insoles ran me about $30 and the shoes were $100 which is pretty standard for new running shoes!

Kris said...

Sounds like you've really found a way to keep it personal, Ann. I like your suggestions.

And, Christy, thanks for the reply!

Ryan Adair said...

My favorite office wear is khaki or black slacks with fun (slightly conservative) tops, jewelry and cute flats. Comfort for me is key. I usually keep a versatile blazer at the office so I can look more professional if necessary. I accesorize with scarfs sometimes, and I always make sure my hair looks nice--- that automatically makes a more casual look dressier. Since I am on a budget, I buy pants that are "classic" and fit really well, and I buy a few tops &/or jewelry that are more trendy every couple of seasons :)

Tabitha said...

I miss working as a writer.

It sounds like you've got a pretty awesome gig. When I first got my office job, I had no clue what the heck to wear. I ended up wearing jeans and t-shirts most of the time.... hmm. Maybe that's why I got laid off. Haha.

I'm excited for you and this opportunity! Keep us filled in on how it goes. :)

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