Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Professional Wardrobe for L1s

I remember it like it was yesterday applying for my first legal internship. I was nervous, anxious, and ready to prove everything I had learned over the years. Like most senior or new graduate law student we learned the law in school however, we didn’t learn how to look the part for our new lifestyle.

Majority of us wore t-shirts, sweats/jeans, sneakers for our day to day wardrobe. Now we have to look like lawyers on a very small budget.

Law is a serious field so we should look serious. Right? 

Does that mean dull and boring? 

Being a new L1 you already have to prove yourself to associates, partners etc. So how do you look like you deserve to work in the industry?

Years ago in the legal field you didn’t see a lot of bright colors, prints, or fashion icons.

Today lawyers, judges, paralegals, interns, etc are looking fierce and closing big cases while looking stylish. We are seeing more power color suits for women, silhouettes, patterns, materials, tailored suits for men, and shoes are making you take a double look.

So to answer if you have to look boring to be taken serious…NO! You don’t have to cover up who you are with all black and brown attire.

It is more important today to show you have what it takes overall to be the best attorney or judge. Hundreds of thousands of attorneys graduate yearly. What will you do to stand out in your interview or position?

If you are on a budget adding these 5 garments to your wardrobe will help you look the part as a new L1! The goal is to make several outfits that will look clean and professional.

I recommend budgeting $200-$500 based on the store and quality. I DO NOT recommend spending over $500 in your first year of law due to your body and life will change.

Bonus Shopping Tips:  1.) Save your buck and shop at stores like New York & Company, H&M, Dorthy Perkins, JC Penny, Khols and thrift stores. 2.) Ask if additional discounts are available for college students. 3.) Set a budget and stick to it. 4.) Purchase soles to keep shoes comfortable-you will be working long hours and on your feet walking a lot.

Congrats on making it!!!! Now lets look the part! 

#1- Navy or Blue Blazer (Preferably tailored) – A navy or blue blazer can be worn with many different bottom options from jeans to pencil skirts/dress pants. You can make a thrift store blazer look AMAZING by getting it tailored. Skip Starbucks twice and viola you have the funds to get a tailored blazer! (Sacrifices….)   

#2- Dress Shoes, flats or 3 inch (or less) heels- You will be doing a lot of walking in your first year of law based on where you get a job. If it is at law offices in walking distance to the courthouse prepare to get all your steps in for your fitbit! Purchase a pair of Dr. Scholls shoe inserts for additional comfort. Wear your heels in the office and your flats when running errands.

#3-Power Suit- The reason it is called a power suit is because it is the one outfit worn to boost your confidence, fits to perfection, looks great on you, and makes others take you serious. Think of it as your armor as the new law knight! 

#4- White or Striped Button Down- You will purchase many of these in your career. Men: Know your neck circumference and arm length. Ladies: Ensure your shirt does not have a breast bulge or gap.

(Photo Credit: TheClassyCubicle)

#5-Accessories (Tie, Watch, Socks, Handbag, Dainty bracelet, necklace, earrings)- Adding the right accessories will complete your look and will add your personal touch. Don’t be afraid to wear burgundy strings with brown shoes, scarves, textured ties, bold necklaces, and/or watches.


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