The Hunt: Interview Suits

Stylish Interview SuitsSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

It’s almost time for thousands of law students and MBA students around the planet: interview week! We of course have the Guide to Women’s Suits for general advice, and we pick an interesting women’s suit once a week — but we haven’t rounded up interview suits in a while (charcoal suits in 2013, navy suits in 2012). There are, of course, a few Hall of Famers to note in this category:  Banana Republic’s lightweight wool suiting, Ann Taylor’s triacetate suiting, J.Crew’s Super 120s suiting,  Theory’s stretch wool suiting — in addition to those classics, below are the first six suits I’d try if I were looking to buy a classic, basic interview suit in today’s market.

Readers, do you have any favorite suits that are classic enough for interviewing? What’s your favorite budget suiting line — and your favorite splurge suiting line?

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The Hunt: Low Heels

Six Low, Cute and Comfortable Heels | CorporetteSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

Low heels that are feminine and cute can be difficult to find!  We’ve looked before (in 2012 and 2013), and there are two Hall-of-Famers that I can think of:  Stuart Weitzman Poco and the Cole Haan Juliana 45 (2″, $90-$160).  In addition to those few, we’ve rounded up six other heels (below) that are currently on the market and all under 2.25″ — most are under $100.  Readers, what is your favorite heel height? Have you gotten any great low heels recently?  Can you think of any other “hall of famers”? 

 

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The Hunt: Fit and Flare Dresses

fit and flare dressesSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

I noticed a few weeks ago that readers wanted a Hunt for fit and flare dresses, so I thought we’d round some up today! I usually consider a “fit and flare” dress to be one that is fitted from the waist up, but A-line/fluid/flouncy/full from the waist down. (Interestingly, a quick Google for “what is fit and flare” turns up lots of wedding dress results.)

I generally think of the look as being less “classic work” than a sheath dress because it tends to be popular one season and disappear almost entirely the next — so, like the flouncy skirt, if you like this style on your body type, this is a great time to stock up.

The style is often described as “curve hugging” and with words like “flirty!” which make it seem like it’s less work-appropriate, but I think all of the pictured dresses are totally work-appropriate for even the most conservative offices. Obviously, watch your skirt length and your sizing, but that’s true of everything with workwear. One bonus with this style: there are a TON of budget options — almost all of my picks are below $100!

Readers, have you gotten any great fit and flare dresses recently? What defines a great fit and flare dress for you?

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The Hunt: Linen Blazers

The Best Linen Blazers of 2014 | CorporetteSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

I think a classic piece every woman should have for summer is a linen blazer.  As noted in our last summer blazer roundup, there are other lightweight options for summer — silk, seersucker, cotton pique, etc — but nothing breathes quite like linen, and there are a ton of great options for linen blazers in stores right now.  Ladies, what is your favorite fabric for a lightweight blazer?  Have you bought any linen blazers recently that you’re loving (or have any from previous years that you can’t wait to break out of your closet)?

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The Hunt: Sheath Dresses

The Best Sheath Dresses | CorporetteSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

There are a ton of cute sheath dresses out right now, so I thought we’d hunt for a few since we haven’t done a roundup since last year! Readers, what does your perfect sheath dress look like? Sleeves? Neckline? Have you gotten any amazing sheath dresses recently?

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The Hunt: Black Bags

The Hunt: Basic Black Shoulder Bags & Satchels | CorporetteSure, we all know what basics professional women are supposed to have in their closets, but if you’re buying one for the first time or replacing one you’ve worn into the ground, it can be a pain to find exactly the right incarnation in stores. In “The Hunt,” we search the stores for a basic item that every woman should have.

I love a tote bag as much as the next person — but for some reason, I associate smaller bags with spring and summer.  Here in NYC it means longer days, dining and drinking with friends outside, and long walks to and from work.  It also means lighter commuting shoes (ahem, flip flops usually), and less need for shoving STUFF in your bag (scarves, hats, etc).  I think a black satchel or shoulder bag is something every woman should have — some of the classics that we’ve rounded up in previous Hunts are still available, such as the Kate Spade Cobble Hill, or the Rebecca Minkoff Cupid, or the LV Pont-Neuf (rounded up in 2013)… or the Marc by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Lil Ukita (rounded up in 2012; there are a TON of the “Classic Q” bags that one should consider here).  Readers, what is your must-have basic color for a bag?  Have you bought any great shoulder bags or satchels lately (or, do you wear any classics that are still available)? 

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