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Thread: "Business Casual"... I have no idea WTF I'm doing.

  1. Grouchy Hag
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    #1

    "Business Casual"... I have no idea WTF I'm doing.

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    I have to buy some clothes for this new job, because the only other thing I have is the $400 business suit that I wore to the interview. The HR guy told me "business casual" beforehand, so I figured my suit would probably be one step up... I was about two or three steps

    Thing is, I'm actually going to be one of only two female drafters in the entire office, and I didn't see the other woman at all during the interview. The HR manager and mechanical engineer that interviewed me were wearing polos/short-sleeved button-ups and slacks, but another employee that I saw was wearing jeans! And none of the female business casual examples I've seen were a) consistent or b) not totally overdressed for this company. I DON'T GET IT.

    I am a jeans and t-shirt person, so I am not good at the dressing in feminine clothing thing. Help!

    If it helps: Though I'll be in a cubicle most of the day, I do occasionally have to go to factories and plants to do site work, so high heels are a no-go. Probably no skirts, either.

    Sorry for any typos; I have had most of a bottle of celebration wine in an hour and am now bordering on plastered.
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    #2
    I usually have a pair of dress pants, then pair it with a button up blouse and a sweater/shawl/cardigan. Flats and kitten heels ok

    Or if during colder months I have a nice cowl neck sweater to go with the pants. Pencil skirts sometimes as well.

    What's not okay is usually clothing baring your shoulders but depending on the region, it could be a grey area
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    #3
    Quote Originally Posted by CPANavyWife View Post
    I usually have a pair of dress pants, then pair it with a button up blouse and a sweater/shawl/cardigan. Flats and kitten heels ok

    Or if during colder months I have a nice cowl neck sweater to go with the pants. Pencil skirts sometimes as well.

    What's not okay is usually clothing baring your shoulders but depending on the region, it could be a grey area


    I agree!

    Also, your location says WPAFB - I know the area pretty well (we were stationed there, our kids are in college there), if you want to post or PM me the company, I may know more and if I don't *Bazinga* may, she still lives in that area!
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    #4
    I say invest in a well fitting pair of slacks, some kitten heels or flats and basically any dressy top. No cleavage and no bare shoulders and you're good to go!
  5. Team Rocket
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    #5
    I would aim to dress a little over-dressy until you get to know the culture. Being in So Cal, nice jeans are totally business casual here (thank god) but that wouldn't fly in many places. I tend to wear nice blouses/tops or a cami with cardigan. I do have black slacks and khakis I wear occasionally too, and for shoes I just have plain black and brown leather sneakers. On rare days I wear a nicer sundress with cardigan and boots.
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  6. Grouchy Hag
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    #6
    Quote Originally Posted by CPANavyWife View Post
    I usually have a pair of dress pants, then pair it with a button up blouse and a sweater/shawl/cardigan. Flats and kitten heels ok

    Or if during colder months I have a nice cowl neck sweater to go with the pants. Pencil skirts sometimes as well.

    What's not okay is usually clothing baring your shoulders but depending on the region, it could be a grey area
    Okay, that's kind of what I suspected but I wasn't entirely sure. No bare shoulders isn't a problem since I have eczema and am probably going to want to keep my arms covered in an office setting with at least 3/4-length sleeves.

    Quote Originally Posted by Lynn View Post
    I agree!

    Also, your location says WPAFB - I know the area pretty well (we were stationed there, our kids are in college there), if you want to post or PM me the company, I may know more and if I don't *Bazinga* may, she still lives in that area!
    PM sent
  7. Grouchy Hag
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    #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Andie View Post
    I say invest in a well fitting pair of slacks, some kitten heels or flats and basically any dressy top. No cleavage and no bare shoulders and you're good to go!
    I think the hardest part for me so far has been the "well-fitting slacks" thing. Miraculously my suit pants fit perfectly, but I'm having trouble finding less expensive slacks that fit just as well. I have no butt, so even jeans tend to sag in the back but it's much more pronounced in slacks with looser material. I'm guessing this is where I invest in a tailor.

    Quote Originally Posted by rocket_lizz View Post
    I would aim to dress a little over-dressy until you get to know the culture. Being in So Cal, nice jeans are totally business casual here (thank god) but that wouldn't fly in many places. I tend to wear nice blouses/tops or a cami with cardigan. I do have black slacks and khakis I wear occasionally too, and for shoes I just have plain black and brown leather sneakers. On rare days I wear a nicer sundress with cardigan and boots.
    Yeah, I'm probably going to stick with the possibly too formal route until my start date. I'm probably going to have to start going in to sign paperwork this week, so that will give me a chance to see what some of the other employees are wearing.
  8. MilitarySOS Jewel
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    #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Frisson View Post
    I think the hardest part for me so far has been the "well-fitting slacks" thing. Miraculously my suit pants fit perfectly, but I'm having trouble finding less expensive slacks that fit just as well. I have no butt, so even jeans tend to sag in the back but it's much more pronounced in slacks with looser material. I'm guessing this is where I invest in a tailor.



    Yeah, I'm probably going to stick with the possibly too formal route until my start date. I'm probably going to have to start going in to sign paperwork this week, so that will give me a chance to see what some of the other employees are wearing.
    what stores have you tried for slacks? personally i love express' pants but i have the opposite problem too much butt haha. i also like target for dress pants if you're tall enough to wear them (I need like 5" heels).
  9. I miss Target & Trader Joe's, open roads & the smell of home
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    #9
    I have a butt and find that Gap pants don't fit me because they are made for no butts so maybe they will work for you!
  10. Team Rocket
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    #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Frisson View Post
    I think the hardest part for me so far has been the "well-fitting slacks" thing. Miraculously my suit pants fit perfectly, but I'm having trouble finding less expensive slacks that fit just as well. I have no butt, so even jeans tend to sag in the back but it's much more pronounced in slacks with looser material. I'm guessing this is where I invest in a tailor.

    Yeah, I'm probably going to stick with the possibly too formal route until my start date. I'm probably going to have to start going in to sign paperwork this week, so that will give me a chance to see what some of the other employees are wearing.
    You might try Junior's sections for pants. It seems to me that Junior's clothes tend to have less room for butts/curves. Once my butt grew, I had to start buying only Women's pants
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