• Hi, I'm the owner and main administrator of Styleforum. If you find the forum useful and fun, please help support it by buying through the posted links on the forum. Our main, very popular sales thread, where the latest and best sales are listed, are posted HERE

    Purchases made through some of our links earn a commission for the forum and allow us to do the work of maintaining and improving it. Finally, thanks for being a part of this community. We realize that there are many choices today on the internet, and we have all of you to thank for making Styleforum the foremost destination for discussions of menswear and fashion.
  • STYLE. COMMUNITY. GREAT CLOTHING.

    Bored of counting likes on social networks? At Styleforum, you’ll find rousing discussions that go beyond strings of emojis.

    Click Here to join Styleforum's thousands of style enthusiasts today!

Summer Associate at Law Firm, thinking about new clothes

insp86

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2007
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Hey- I hope all is well. For a point of references, I started this thread last July looking for an interviewing suit as a 0L: http://www.styleforum.net/showthread.php?t=39469 Well, I ended up wearing a navy HS&M suit, a light blue Geoffrey Beene french shirt, pewter-ish cufflinks borrowed form my dad, a striped blue BCBG (cheapo Macy's line) tie, and Kenneth Cole outlet shoes for about four interviews. Total cost was probably about $500. The result? A full market summer associate job, my 1L summer.
Anyway, with that in mind, and seeing as it is my spring break and I'm bored (don't want to start thinking about studying just yet).... Does anyone have any suggestions for the summer? I really need new everything, and don't mind spending a little money as it will all most likely be good next summer as well (assuming I don't hate the job and end up at a DA's office). I think the dress code is slacks, dress shirt, tie without needing a jacket most days. But at the same time, investing in another suit or a nice jacket might be wise. I think the biggest thing I should upgrade is my shoes. Thanks in advance, and this time I'll jump back in if anyone has any questions.
 

insp86

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2007
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Also, any thoughts on the BrooksCool line at BB? Seems like it might be a smart move for a hot summer job.
 

noVA99

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2008
Messages
234
Reaction score
0
hit the outlet malls if there is one near you....for a good workhorse shoe, try Johnston and Murphy, something for under $200. I have 2 pairs of monk straps and a cap toe shoe from them (half leather/rubber soles), bought them at the outlet store, and I have used them hard for the past several years. Great shoe, in my opinion. Cole Haan is another good shoe, I have a cap toe leather sole shoe, which was $155 at Nordstrom.

for basic suit, can't go wrong with another HSM (I'm thinking to get one as a workhorse suit and going to inquire about this on another thread). A good solid grey or navy is good, maybe even a pinstripe. For ties, mmmmm, I guess anything will work as long as it's not some synthetic crap. Dress shirts?? Hmmmm, I found Hugo Boss shirts to be nice, I get them for $50 at my local Syms store, plus they are abundant at the outlet stores as well. I wear them consistently for the past several years and haven't had any issues with them getting torn up from use.

I would look into some blazers too, since you can mix and match pants and can "make" probably 3 "suits" out of a blazer, 3 pairs of pants, a couple of ties and dress shirts.
 

ColeFieldHouse

Senior Member
Joined
Nov 24, 2007
Messages
260
Reaction score
1
PM me if you get a chance. With some more details I can probably help you out a bit.
 

zarathustra

Distinguished Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2006
Messages
2,591
Reaction score
463
"I think the dress code is slacks, dress shirt, tie "

Please don't do this. If they require a tie, please wear a sport jacket. Thank you.

As per shoes- AE shoebank. Niles is cleared out @129. Same for the Byron and Dryden. Much better shoes @ a much better price.

While I understand that you do not want to show the attorneys up --- dress for what you want to be, not who you are.
 

insp86

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2007
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Update:

After asking around this morning, I've learned that "business casual" at my firm means slacks without a tie, but that most attorneys/summers have a suit in the office in case they need to court or have an important meeting.

Thanks again for the advice. Do I need to specify a budget? That's part of the issue, I can spend a decent amount, but I'd prefer to put most of my (admittedly ridiculous) salary into loans/tuition.

Thanks again.
 

lawyerdad

Lying Dog-faced Pony Soldier
Joined
Mar 10, 2006
Messages
27,334
Reaction score
16,481
Originally Posted by insp86
Update:

After asking around this morning, I've learned that "business casual" at my firm means slacks without a tie, but that most attorneys/summers have a suit in the office in case they need to court or have an important meeting.

Thanks again for the advice. Do I need to specify a budget? That's part of the issue, I can spend a decent amount, but I'd prefer to put most of my (admittedly ridiculous) salary into loans/tuition.

Thanks again.


Given what you were told, are you looking for a suit recommendation, or recommendations for slacks/shirts?
 

insp86

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2007
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Originally Posted by lawyerdad
Given what you were told, are you looking for a suit recommendation, or recommendations for slacks/shirts?

I think when push comes to shove, I'm going to end up buying something like (but I can be talked out of this)... I do have some business stuff, but none of it is that nice.

Three pairs of dress pants
Five dress shirts
Two pairs of real shoes

Maybe one sports jacket
Maybe one new suit
Maybe one rain/ overcoat
Mabye a few new ties
 

mishon

Distinguished Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2007
Messages
1,122
Reaction score
29
From what you mentioned ("I think the dress code is slacks, dress shirt, tie without needing a jacket most days"), you aren't clerking at a conservative firm a la Sullivan & Cromwell. I would, still, overdress just a little and wear a suit half the time - it creates a better impression. Good luck.
 

academe

Distinguished Member
Joined
Feb 14, 2008
Messages
1,872
Reaction score
231
Originally Posted by mishon
From what you mentioned ("I think the dress code is slacks, dress shirt, tie without needing a jacket most days"), you aren't clerking at a conservative firm a la Sullivan & Cromwell. I would, still, overdress just a little and wear a suit half the time - it creates a better impression. Good luck.

+1

Better to go in a little more formal and "loosen up" as you get to know your office culture. Enjoy yourself!
 

qtdude

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 10, 2008
Messages
63
Reaction score
0
As a partner at a small firm (20 attys.); dressing well would make a good impression, even at a very large firm. However, you do not need to go overboard, if its slacks and a dress shirt, mixing in a suit every now and then is fine, but don't do it everyday.

You want to convey that you are a team player who will not rock the boat. If every partner is going with the slacks and shirt and you go suit every day, that's not a good impression IMHO.

You've made a good start by not falling below the standard (believe me youngsters do this) but don't go to the opposite extreme.

Good luck and enjoy your summer (summer is definitely going to be easier and better than real work.)
 

JordanB

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 6, 2006
Messages
267
Reaction score
0
Originally Posted by insp86
I think when push comes to shove, I'm going to end up buying something like (but I can be talked out of this)... I do have some business stuff, but none of it is that nice.

Three pairs of dress pants
Five dress shirts
Two pairs of real shoes

Maybe one sports jacket
Maybe one new suit
Maybe one rain/ overcoat
Mabye a few new ties


This is a pretty good list.

I would do maybe 2 pants in grey and one in tan (they all can go with either brown or black shoes and you should be getting one "real" brown pair and one "real" black pair).

You'll need at least 5 dress shirts altogether. I don't know where you'll be working in the summer, but if it's warm, you can't count on more than one wearing per shirt between washes.

You definitely need a sports jacket. My firm is business casual, but I always wore a sportscoat and I think that it made me look more professional. There will be plenty of last minute lunches that you're invited to where a lot of the partners will be wearing sports coats. Changing into a suit quickly would be too dressy, but a sportcoat would be just right.

Also, even though you are business casual, you'll probably be wearing a suit at least one to two times a week (court, client meetings, fancy dinners out). Getting an extra one couldn't hurt.

A raincoat also is a good investment, so that you never appear with a dripping wet suit. I wouldn't spend too much money on it though; it's mostly utilitarian at this point for you.
 

insp86

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 7, 2007
Messages
160
Reaction score
0
Originally Posted by JordanB
This is a pretty good list.

I would do maybe 2 pants in grey and one in tan (they all can go with either brown or black shoes and you should be getting one "real" brown pair and one "real" black pair).

You'll need at least 5 dress shirts altogether. I don't know where you'll be working in the summer, but if it's warm, you can't count on more than one wearing per shirt between washes.

You definitely need a sports jacket. My firm is business casual, but I always wore a sportscoat and I think that it made me look more professional. There will be plenty of last minute lunches that you're invited to where a lot of the partners will be wearing sports coats. Changing into a suit quickly would be too dressy, but a sportcoat would be just right.

Also, even though you are business casual, you'll probably be wearing a suit at least one to two times a week (court, client meetings, fancy dinners out). Getting an extra one couldn't hurt.

A raincoat also is a good investment, so that you never appear with a dripping wet suit. I wouldn't spend too much money on it though; it's mostly utilitarian at this point for you.


This is great advice... can you talk a little more about colors? What color shoes/belt do you wear with gray pants and a blue shirt? What is the best color sports jacket as to maximize flexibility.

For shoes, my dad wears and loves Allen Edmond's... so I'll probably follow in his footsteps (stupid joke). If I was to do one black one brown, anything I should look for or look to avoid? Thanks again!
 

Styleforum is proudly sponsored by

Featured Sponsor

What Is The Best Value Shoe Brand For Money?

  • Meermin

    Votes: 32 15.2%
  • TLB Mallorca

    Votes: 35 16.6%
  • Cheaney

    Votes: 6 2.8%
  • Carmina

    Votes: 31 14.7%
  • Crockett & Jones

    Votes: 35 16.6%
  • Other

    Votes: 72 34.1%

Related Threads

Forum statistics

Threads
456,963
Messages
9,903,413
Members
206,466
Latest member
ghoumrassi
Top