Ask Belle: Looking for Interview Suits
Jun 1, 2015
My job search is taking me a long stretch of trips to different cities. The interviews usually take two days, so I need two new suits. I want to keep the cost of each suit under $300. Where should I start?
Thanks for your help! CL
The first thing to decided is whether you want to buy skirt suits or pants suits. Many people still believe that skirts are more formal, but it’s not a hard rule. I’ve never been a fan of dress suits, but it’s just a personal preference. I find dresses with identical jackets to be too much of the same fabric.
If you choose pants, decide whether you want to hem them for flats or pumps. Should you choose flats, remember a pointy-toe shoe lengthens the leg. As does a shoe the same colors as the trousers.
The next issue is color. I think navy and black are the best colors. Grey would be my next choice. Tan suits are not my favorite, but only because I think darker colors look a bit more sophisticated.
As for where to shop, there are a few good choices.
Dillard’s probably has the best selection of mid-price suiting. They’re not all winners, but there are some great options.
This suit is a classic. You can’t go wrong with a classic. This Gianni Bini pantsuit is also a sleek classic. For something more modern, this notch-jacket and straight leg trouser combination is a good look. Need something machine washable? Try this Alex Marie suit.
Lord & Taylor is another good place to go looking for suits. The choices can be matronly, but there are some good selections if you’re hunting for basics. I like this charcoal grey suit with a collarless jacket.
Halogen suits from Nordstrom are fashionable without being inappropriate. They have basics, but they also go beyond the basics for women who have that part of their wardrobe covered.
One of the things I like most about Halogen is that they make many of the same pieces in plus-sizes. I wish more brands were inclusive.
Ann Taylor probably has the most extensive suiting options of any of the mall brands. For my figure, their suits require a lot of tailoring, but that’s not true of everyone. Their all-season suit is a pretty good buy; it’s just too bad that most of the sales don’t include suiting.