Journalism problems. We have them. And they involve clothes.
We're constantly asking how we should dress for events we have to go to (shows how important it is, eh eh?). Are jeans ok? How short should my skirt be? Heels or no heels?
These are all important questions for giving a first impression or for dressing interview appropriate. To me, everything depends on social context. Are you interviewing for a job? Then yes, professional it up. Are you interviewing someone for a story? Then you should dress like them. If you're interviewing the local green thumb at the farmer's market, then you shouldn't be showing up in a tweed pencil skirt and a button down. I think you should be dressing to fit the venue you're going to be in.
All in all, I'm not sure the “professional world” would approve of my wardrobe choices. But then again, it depends on what industry you'll be working in. If I was working in straight-up news journalism, the dress code would probably would be more professional (coughboringcough). But as I plan on working in fashion, I feel that gives me a little bit more freedom to experiment and wear pieces that are a little more eccentric. Because that's just so much more fun.
Exhibit A: Making jeans work. And also blazers!
I think jeans are ok IF they are 1) dark enough that we can hardly tell they're denim and 2) paired with a more dressy top. Basically, you have to make up for wearing jeans with everything else that you're wearing.
I also included one of my most favorite things I own in this set: a maroon velvet blazer aka my Willy Wonka coat. It's not as fancy as a regular, dressy blazer. Fabric choice can do wonders for distorting clothes. (Think about it. Say you wore a sweatshirt made of silk organza. Not so casual anymore, is it?)
Exhibit B: Skirts. How short?
Anyone who knows me knows that I sometimes wear obscenely short skirts/dresses (With tights though! Tights make it ok!). But even I know that it isn't acceptable for professional wear. This doesn't mean you have to dress like Grandma. I think a little above the knee is still ok and this is where you can slightly push it with fabric choice. It you're wearing something tight with a lot of stretch, go longer. If you're wearing something loose or a thicker, heavier fabric, a little shorter is ok. It's all about balance.
I picked a lace skirt here because it's a thicker fabric and can go with something tighter on top to balance out the fuller bottom shape. This outfit is super girly too. I can't help it sometimes.
Exhibit C: Cardigans are magical.
I can't say enough about cardigans. Everyone should own a black and grey one at the very least. They're standards. They're nice enough that they can dress up almost everything you wear underneath. You could wear a strapless dress and a cardigan can make it instantly appropriate.
And these pants... personally, I hate ankle pants, but that's just because I think I can't pull them off. They're perfectly fine for people who can, though.
The same applies to boleros (not that this dress is wildly inappropriate to begin with...).
Exhibit D: The Peter Pan collar.
Well... this isn't actually journalism how-to-make-work at all. I just think Peter Pan collars are awesome.
Actually, the good thing about them is that having a collar means that the top will usually be pretty covered up. Who knows, it might even have some type of sleeve! And that makes it an appropriate dress. If it's too short, wear tights. Rule of thumb is BOOBS or LEGS. You must pick one because both are not acceptable unless you're in Vegas.
...now that I look over these, I guess they don't really fit work wear much. But working/class for AJs a lot of the time means going to museums or such artsy places and talking to important people. And I think these outfits would cut it for the Dress Nice, You're Going to Meet People category.
*Outfits were made on Polyvore, the greatest fashion collage site ever.