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Wardrobe For College Graduates

Aug 17, 2007
Your inclination is absolutely correct - suits are the safest way to go. Pant suits are perfectly accepted for women today as well. Choose pant or skirted suits that have jackets that end at the hip and are tapered through the waist.

The curved structure at the waist will help to conceal any pounds and, even after she loses them all, this shape jacket will still enhance her appearance. Black is fine, as are all basics like navy, brown, grey and so on. Avoid large patterns. Simple blouses in soft or primary colors can work and will give her a healthier glow than plain white or ecru. Obviously nothing very low cut and nothing sleeveless accept perhaps the hottest of days.

A cap sleeve is a safer bet. Shoes should be a low heeled pump to be professional as well as flattering. Accessories should be minimal and professional. No big dangly earrings for example. Keep it more tailored and petite. Of course absolutely no short skirts - keep the hem just above the knee - and no revealing tops. Also, keep an open mind. If she reports to work and finds over time that the particular agency she works at has a more casual attitude toward wardrobe, then she can make some changes that are suitable.

I am afraid I can't tell you exactly where to shop in your area but generally department stores have a broad selection at varied price points. To stay in the current fashion avoid the half-off racks. That usually means the items are old season and styles may be different. However, her clothes should not be trendy and basic suits don't always change much.

Check out what is being featured in the store displays and as you get a sense of what is being featured and what styles look good on her, then you could check the sales racks and see if you find something appropriate. Also, sales persons in department stores usually will lend a hand in making selections.

Your daughter sounds like my daughter in law to be. Anyway, you must remember your daughter's style and her fashion sense is, of course what younger people wear, so trying to influence her too much might not be a good idea.

Your daughter is lucky to have you ready and willing to put her first professional wardrobe together! You are off to a great start. A basic black skirted suit is the ideal beginning and, given the extra weight in the hips and thighs, the longer jacket was a perfect choice. If the suit also came with trousers, buy them too for two suits in one. The black jacket can also be paired with other solid colored skirts and slacks for even greater versatility.

A navy suit would be another good choice. Opt for a longer fitted jacket with a knee length or slightly longer, a-line or flared skirt. Again, if trousers are available, buy them too. A great staple would be a camel colored skirt/slacks...it would look good with both blazers. A grey solid or pinstriped suit is also recommended for its classic business appeal and versatility with both black and navy.

If your daughter owned a black suit, a navy suit (skirt and pants), a grey suit (skirt and pants) and a camel skirt, she'd have all the basic pieces necessary for work in a conservative Washington, DC office. The suits could be broken apart and the opportunities for mixing and matching will literally triple her wardrobe. Wool gaberdine is the ideal suit fabric, by the way.

She'll need a stable of basic tops/blouses including white (2), cream and a few other colors that are flattering to her coloring (things like pale blue solid or pale blue and white stripes, pale pink or pale pink and white stripes, red, etc). As for shoes, she should have pumps in black...a heel of 1 to 2 inches; save the higher stuff for evenings!

Easy on the accessories in the office. A simple gold chain necklace, gold post earrings if her ears are pierced (no dangling earrings) and/or pearl studs, a clean watch..gold (white or yellow, depending on her jewelry preferences) or black leather strap. Think understated and professional.

In terms of where to shop, are there major department stores in your area? Bloomingdales? Nordstroms, Macys? They may represent your best bet. For great bargains, now that you know what you are looking for, see if you can get lucky at TJ Max or Loehmans...very hit or miss but sometimes they are goldmines!! Try Overstock.com on line too because they often have Anne Klein and Tahari suits at low prices.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert fashion consultant at http://www.LingerieDress.com/. Visit us when you want the best prices, styles, fashions, and fits of all types of lingerie. We carry a super selection of everyday, as well as bridal and specialty items.
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