Dressing For Work Pt. 1

To all first year graduates who are about to embark on their journey within the corporate world for the very first time, here is a quick and mandatory guide on how to dress on your first day without making a fool out of yourself.

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Avoid conflicting patterns
This usually takes the form of a checked shirt with a striped tie or vice-versa. Look in the mirror when getting ready and think, “Is someone going to have a psychedelic trip looking at me today?” Loud tie equals subdued shirt.

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Do not wear a black shirt under any circumstances
You are not going to a funeral, you are not Johnny Cash and you are certainly not a bouncer. Especially in the warmer climes of Australian cities this look is not going to win you that promotion. If you must wear a darker shirt pair with pants that have a neutral tone.

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Wearing a white shirt with black pants
This look immediately gives the impression it’s your last day of school. Combine it with an un-tucked shirt and you might as well go the whole hog and wear a loose, knotted and ink-stained tie. Try a pastel coloured shirt with your black pants.

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White collars are best left to Wall Street
A worrying and increasing trend I’ve noticed in Sydney is a say, blue or pink business shirt worn with a contrasting white collar. Only Gordon Gecko in Wall Street can rock this and he did it in the 80’s. Go for a subtle flavor and wear a shirt that has some detailing or pattern under the collar or on the inside of the lapel.

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Glasses should only be worn by the optically challenged
A complete 180 degree shift from my school days, nerds have now become cool. However wearing ‘fake’ glasses to give the allusion of intelligence is not the answer. Geek-chic, if necessary, should only be for the bar-scene. Give an air of sophistication by purchasing a tie clip or some antique cufflinks.

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British expat with 6 years in Sydney. Sports nut that currently lives a double life of corporate suit-wearer and writer. Married to an equally sports-mad Aussie, a fashion fiend that ensures I never leave the house in tracksuit bottoms. Loves the ocean, reading and travel. Sydney’s biggest fan but has a huge soft spot for New York.