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Taking care of business in 1993.

Making that first impression work for you is the first step in taking care of business in 1993. Many potential employers say that they give high marks to potential new hires for a well-groomed appearance.

Interviewing with corporate executives for the job you really want can be stressful and intimidating for many students. One of the most important factors a student should know before interviewing is what proper business attire is--what's appropriate and what's not.

Successful Dressing Tips

Denise Jackson, director of human resources for Snyder Diamond's retail store in Los Angeles, says, "Grooming is very important before you take that interview in any field."

"First impressions are very important to employers," Jackson continues. "If your appearance is not acceptable, it could cause you to be turned away from the job you want. A person must be immaculate from head to toe, because this shows the employer that you took the time to prepare for the interview."

Female Exec

For women, well-tailored suits in solid colors--black, brown, and navy--are good choices for a basic wardrobe. Brightly colored suits can sometimes be intimidating in the corporate world, as are trendy styles. Sticking to classic cuts is always safe. A basic white blouse underneath always works. No bare arms or mini-skirts, please. The skirt can be just-above-the-knee but is safer at knee length or just below. The menswear look, influenced by the '92 Calvin Klein collection featuring pinstripe business suits and neckties, double-breasted jackets and trousers, is continuing to make a business fashion statement.

Low heels are comfortable as well as appropriate. Two-inch heels or flats can work fine depending on the outfit. Dresses are okay, but choose one with a solid color or simple print in muted tones and throw a complementing jacket over it to add the corporate touch. Hair should always be combed neatly and make-up light--not overdone. Wear little jewelry and sheer hosiery--not opaques, fish nets, or seams.


For men, the three-button double-breasted jacket in navy, black or grey "is the future model in the business world," according to Steve Warner, western regional sales manager for Falcone.

"Certainly pinstripes are still number one," said Warner. "There is more boldness in shirts and ties. Also, all tones of blue are very important."

Warner said that President Bill Clinton is a good role model for businesswear.

"His neckwear is bold even though his suits may be downplayed," said Warner, whose lines have been endorsed by Evander Holyfield, Larry Holmes, and the late Sammy Davis Jr. "His ties are bright and that's acceptable in businesswear."

Men's shoes should be black, grey or brown, and polished.

What's In?

Having the right wardrobe for working is essential. What's in this winter for business wear?

Skirts are longer this year with a fitted look and a shorter designer jacket to add flare. Skirts are also worn above-the-knee with pleats, or a simple wrap skirt can be worn to complement a white-collared blouse which buttons in the middle. Wool jackets are also popular this year with skirts or pants. Colors include earthtones--maroon, rust raisin, black, dark brown or evergreen in pants, skirts, ties, and jackets.

Jewelry like a simple chain and earrings close to the ear are appropriate.

Dressing for success is something which takes time and practice, but with the right effort it can lead you on your way to a professional career.

Fashion Q & A: Dear Julia:

I am a 21-year-old college student at Central Texas College. I am very interested in becoming a designer. I have been trying for quite a while to produce clothes for companies or designers, but I have not received any responses. Can you please give me advice on how I can go about getting my ideas across to a particular designer? I would like to draw in a free lance manner. After reading THE BLACK COLLEGIAN Magazine and seeing the different fashions in it, I said "That is it. I am gonna make it."

Yionada Borgmann Killeen, TX

Dear Yionada:

If you want to become a free lance fashion sketch artist to market your design concepts and/or other designers' concepts, it may be wise for you to polish your art skills by taking courses, researching other sketch artists' works, and reading fashion magazines where you can see the kinds of sketches that are marketable--and take notes. Identify several designers and/or fashion publications to submit your work to and find out who the contact person is. Then go for it! Always type a cover letter and envelope to demonstrate your professionalism. Enclose your best work. Allow 10 days or so, and if you haven't received a response, then follow up with a phone call. Once you are working for an established designer or publication--pay attention to how you can move with the company and/or move into a desired position on your own.

Work on your skills and try to network with other professionals so that you can improve your raw talent and become the success you know you can be. Good luck!
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Title Annotation:Lookin' Good; includes related article; guidelines for career dressing
Author:Wilson, Julia A.; Warfield, Kim
Publication:The Black Collegian
Date:Jan 1, 1993
Previous Article:Negotiating college life.
Next Article:"Understanding that Malcolm X became El Hajji Malik Shabazz, why are so many people wearing Xs?" (Feedback)

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