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What to wear to a job interview: 3 outfit ideas

A new year means a fresh start—and for some, a new job. Landing an interview can seem like the hard part, but choosing the right outfit can be almost as tough.

After all, the wrong look can cost you the job. We’ve had candidates show up in flip-flops and cutoff shorts (and you can guess whether they got hired). Even a nice shirt and slacks can give off a careless vibe if something is wrinkled, covered in cat hair or too tight.

On the flip side, the right outfit can make a winning first impression and help you relax. You’re more confident when you’re comfortable and not tugging on hemlines. That translates to a smoother job interview.

Need a cheat sheet? Here are three different interview outfit ideas based on the type of work environment. (If you’re interviewing to be a paralegal, your look will obviously be much different than Chief Officer of Fun at a startup.) When in doubt, contact the HR person who scheduled the interview with you and ask for general dress code guidelines. Here we go!

  1. Conservative job interview outfit

Finance, law, politics…if you’re interviewing in a conservative environment, play it safe. Start with a classic black suit. (According to experts, orange is the worst job interview color; black is safest.) If you’re wearing a pencil skirt, sit down in the dressing room to make sure it’s long enough and doesn’t pull at the hips. Whether you wear a skirt or a pantsuit, make sure it fits perfectly–take it to your tailor if necessary.

As for suiting material, we’re partial to our Seasonless Wool or Ultra 9™ wool suiting. The latter has a pinch of stretch. Either way, wrinkles fall out of wool and it just plain looks sharp. (What can we say? We’ve been perfecting wool for over a century, so we’re biased.)

Once your outfit is clean, ironed or steamed and impeccably fitting, add subtle jewelry and moderate heels. Since it’s winter, finish everything off with a peacoat or trench coat. For last-minute touch-ups, toss a lint roller in your car’s glove box or tuck a travel-sized one in your purse. Last, don’t forget to breathe. You’ll do just fine.

Here are a few of our pieces we love for conservative job interviews:

job-interview-outfits-conservative

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  1. Creative job interview outfit

Applying for a job in the arts, fashion or teaching? Your outfit can be more fun. Play with color, pattern and texture while staying squarely in “professional and polished” territory. January in particular can be a dull sea of black winter coats, so seize the chance to showcase your personality with a touch of florals, stripes or color. But don’t go too wild. Pick one eye-catcher and keep the rest of your outfit simple in solid, more subdued tones.

Now to accessorize! Unlike conservative workplaces where quiet, delicate jewelry is key, creative settings mean you can wear statement jewelry. As for shoes, heels are always safe, but why not try booties, Oxfords or equestrian boots? Stay away from sneakers no matter how nice they are. (I know. Wait until you get home.) Hint: If you’re interviewing for a job here at Pendleton, you should be at least this dressed up!

creative-job-interview-outfit-ideas

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  1. Casual job interview outfit

At certain tech companies and startups, wearing a suit won’t impress the boss; it’ll get you strange looks. (It’s especially true here in Portland, land of the casual.) The good news is, you can tone down the formality without heading into jeans-and-hoodie territory.

It can be tricky to strike the right balance, so start with a blouse, casual slacks and a blazer to give a “I’m competent” vibe. Then add nice flats and a brightly colored belt or vibrant bag for a down-to-earth touch. And remember, no matter how casual your outfit, it should be well-fitting, well-maintained and not too revealing.

You’ve probably heard the general rule: However employees in your (future) department dress, you should dress one step nicer for the interview. Translation: Even if everyone in the company wears jeans, resist the urge. Save your favorite faded denim for once you get the job! One last tip: Don’t forget to send a thank-you card after the interview. Works every time.

casual-job-interview-outfit-ideas

 

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Good luck—we’ll see you in the conference room!

What’s your go-to outfit for a job interview?

3 Ways to Wear Plaid, Fall’s Biggest Trend

What’s the single biggest fashion trend out there right now? PLAID. (Check out Vogue, Women’s Wear Daily, or Harper’s Bazaar if you don’t believe us.)

We at Pendleton don’t typically chase fads, but our ears perk up when it’s one we’ve been perfecting since the 1920s. Indulge us in a quick trip down memory lane, then we’ll show you three ways to style plaid for today.

Pendleton + Plaid: Some Quick History

We’re pretty obsessed with plaid, as well as its more distinguished subset, tartan. For the uninitiated, tartans are basically registered and/or historical plaids. (All tartans are plaids, but not all plaids are tartans.) Traditionally, Celts would wear the family’s tartan as a proud assertion of family identity. Scottish families even registered their family plaid with the Scottish Tartans Society. We even have our own official tartan, the Pendleton Hunting Tartan—it’s green and blue with touches of red.

We started making plaid wool shirts almost a century ago, in 1924. But things really exploded in in the ’60s, when The Beach Boys wore our Board Shirts on the cover of the album Surfer Girl. (Did you know the band was originally called The Pendletones? Yep!)

Things only took off from there. Plaid got a big boost with the ’90s grunge scene, and it’s been pretty popular ever since. Everyone from George Lucas to Gwen Stefani has been spotted in a Pendleton plaid shirt. And don’t forget Diane Keaton, Neil Young, Marilyn Monroe, Johnny Depp, Lady Gaga, Jack Kerouac and Kurt Cobain, to name a few!

Ready to try some plaid yourself? First off, there’s nothing wrong with looking like you’ve stepped out of a vintage ad…

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…but it’s easy to make plaid more modern too. Here are 3 ways we love to wear the timeless pattern.

1. The Long Plaid Coat

A plaid coat says “I know what’s hip right now” with the added bonus of looking just as stylish in 10 years. It’s versatile enough to go with a worn-in tee on the weekends and your workwear during the week. Put simply, it’ll never go out of style. We love a long plaid wool coat paired with your favorite ankle boots, denim and a simple solid pullover:

How to Wear Plaid: Pendleton Plaid Coat

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2. The Plaid Fit-and-Flare Dress

Girly, grungy or traditional? It’s all how you style it. This plaid Audrey dress is one of our bestselling pieces, likely because it’s so open to interpretation. It works just as well with heels and a blazer as it does with chunky ankle boots, a leather moto jacket and Smells Like Teen Spirit. We like it with a wide wrap belt to highlight the fit-and-flare shape:

Pendleton Plaid Audrey Dress - How to Wear

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3. The Plaid Shirt Dress

Your most casual option of these three is a plaid wool shirt dress. It’s where weekend warmth and comfort meet style. On warmer fall days, throw it on instead of yoga pants and a sweatshirt for a look that’s just as cozy and much more fashionable. If it’s cold, layer on leggings, tall boots and a soft, thick scarf:

How to Wear a Plaid Shirtdress

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We know the fashion industry will move on to the next trend in a heartbeat, but we’ll always have a soft spot for plaid—and fashion in general that transcends trends.

OK, your turn: How are you wearing plaid this fall? And which of these pieces is your favorite?

C&I Magazine’s Spring Fashion Issue

Spring is getting here, we hope, and Cowboys & Indians is making us look fantastic in their latest Spring Fashion Issue.

Denim

 

 Our women’s Denim Shirt with an adorable afghan skirt!

Shell

 

Our Mixed Media Shell makes a perfect first layer.

Frontier

 

Everyone loves our Frontier shirt.

Canyon

 

Our original High Grade Westernwear wool shirt, the Canyon.

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We always love to see what C&I does with Pendleton! Here’s one of our favorite shoots from a few years ago.

Apr_Cowboys&Indians_MWShirt_Spread1

Apr_Cowboys&Indians_MWShirt_Spread2So go get your Spring on! It’s about time, yes?

Welcome to the Lobby

This is Shelley, the Visual Director for our stores.  We are lucky to have her creative visual input around the corporate headquarters. While down in the archives, Shelley found some sepia-toned prints of people at work in the Pendleton mills. She brought them up, dusted them off, and let them inspire some beautiful lobby windows with blankets, and Fall 2012 apparel from Womenswear, Menswear and The Portland Collection.

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Hope you enjoyed this tour of Shelley’s creative work. We are thankful to enjoy it every day. From all of us at Pendleton, have a happy Thanksgiving.

Classic Styling, Modern Sensibility

Fall is here, and we’ve never been more excited about a collection. Traditional checks, classic plaids and traditional tweeds, all  interpreted with a modern sensibility.

Enjoy our women’s lookbook here.

The Toboggan Coat for Fall 2012; come with us to the Pendleton archives!

Pendleton’s heritage stretches back to the earliest weaving endeavors of the Kay/Bishop family, which officially starts in 1863. This means we have a trove of archival textiles, garments and blankets to draw from.

This year you’ll see some Jazz Age inspiration in our Fall 12 Toboggan Coat.

This coat is based on examples from the 1920s we have hanging on the racks down in the archives. Here’s a peek of what that rack looks like:

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As promised, the new Pendleton store at Portland International Airport.

Enjoy! We are definitely worth the trip.

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Our new store at the PDX airport opens soon!

We’re pleased to announce the opening of our first store at the Portland International Airport. This location will showcase Pendleton’s heritage for travelers from all over the country and the world. Doors will open on Saturday, August 4th, with a grand opening celebration planned for Thursday, Aug. 9th at 10 a.m.

The new store’s expresses Pendleton’s ‘green’ sensibilities. Upcycled fixtures and shelving made from reclaimed barn wood work alongside gears salvaged from our mill. Various vintage carts, wagons and display pieces add to the aura of industrial heritage. “We took an Industrial Chic approach to the design,” says Robin Crowell, Retail Division Manager for Pendleton. “You’ll see replica mill-style lighting and various elements of a working mill interior, galvanized pipe, specially designed wool fabric for fitting room curtains along with distinctive wallpaper and stained concrete floors throughout . . . all taking the sensibilities of the mill and translating it into a dynamic retail setting.”

This dynamic translates into an exclusive merchandising mix, with Menswear and Womenswear in an extensive assortment of iconic Pendleton plaids and patterns. A rich collection of blankets will include plaid and tartan throws and National Park blankets, and the Native American-inspired jacquard Trade blankets for which Pendleton is so well-known. Beginning in September, shoppers will find The Portland Collection for Fall 2012. This collection offers a fresh perspective on Pendleton’s iconic textiles as seen through the eyes of three independent and talented Portland designers. To mark the grand opening, Pendleton will host a ribbon cutting and an American Indian blessing along with store specials throughout the weekend.

For now, we invite you to enjoy a slideshow tour of the store in progress. You will see a lot of Shelley Prael in these images. The slideshow starts with her scrubbing away a century of wear on the gears that eventually grace the store’s walls. Shelley also designed and created the dressing room wallpaper, a collage of vintage ads from Pendleton’s past. As Pendleton’s visual director, she has been hands-on through the creation of this exciting, unique space. We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to Shelley for her vision and hard work in bringing our new store to its opening day!

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Secretary of State in Pendleton Womenswear

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton chose the Bond Street ruffled blouse from Fall 2011 for her recent announcements about the upcoming Nobel Summit in Chicago.  Ms. Clinton is riding a way of popularity lately, and we are happy to see her wearing it well.

 

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Our new Worthington Store: Grand opening coming soon

Our newest store is opening!

Pendleton
The Shops at Worthington Place
7227 N. High Street, Suite #117
Worthington, OH  43085
614.846.0668
 
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