Q&A: University Interviews8.11.10
What do you wear to a university interview in Fashion?
Although I appreciate that this post probably won't appeal to everyone, I know that quite a few of my followers and readers are interested in going into fashion at degree level, so when this popped up in my Formspring, I thought it would be perfect to feature on the blog! In hindsight, this also applies to university and other casual interviews so I hope it helps some of you. I know for a fact that two years ago when my own University offers and interviews started coming through, there was hardly anything on trusty Google by way of what to wear to a university interview. So, that being said, good luck with your UCAS, erm, "experience" and I hope this is helpful!
If you're anything like me, there is usually one main problem that arises when you're offered an interview of any sort: what to wear. It's always hard to work out whether to go conservative and formal, or a casual, "I-spent-a-week-planning-this-but-hope-I-don't-look-too-try-hard" look. Having sat through four interviews at various Universities, and a fair few internship interviews, I think I have started to perfect my interview look!
Some outfits that would look perfect at any University interview.
- Show your personality: I'm quite a nervous interviewee, so I go to an interview well prepared, and with the mindset of, "You've already been shortlisted, they just want to know you a bit better," - a gem from the wise ways of my mother! Your outfit for a fashion degree should be fairly fashion forward but not too try-hard, so don't cram a lot of trends into one outfit! If your style is jeans and a shirt, try jeans and an on-trend pussycat blouse, or wear a dress with a statement shearling aviator jacket over the top! If you stray too far away from what you would typically wear, it will show through in your voice and the way you hold yourself.
- Always dress nicer than you think you should: I think to some extent, you should consider where you are interviewing, and reflect it in your outfit. For example, an interview for Fashion Design at the London College of Fashion would require a more quirky and "fashion forward" outfit than an interview for Fashion Marketing at Nottingham Trent, where I would maybe dress a little more conservatively, pairing a sheer chiffon blouse with dark skinny jeans.
- Be comfortable: More and more Universities are interviewing in groups now, possibly because there are so many people going to Uni now! I really think that feeling comfortable in your outfit makes you come across more confident and friendly, which the interviewer will probably be looking out for. I really wouldn't recommend hoodies or leggings, however comfy you decide to go though! A pair of tailored harems and a slouchy jersey tee is great, or a simple dress paired with a cardigan and flats.
- It's University, not a business position: I remember not believing my Mum when she advised me against a shirt for my first interview (which was for Fashion Communication and Promotion at Nottingham Trent University, FYI!) and off I went in skinny jeans, my favey flats and one of those simple jersey blouses from Topshop. BIG mistake, as when I saw everyone else rocking up in pretty dresses and gorgeously put together outfits, I felt like I was interviewing for an office job!
- Finally: wear tasteful jewellery, don't show any cleavage, and nothing scandalously short. Jewellery will make a statement in its' own right, so wear a necklace or two, and perhaps a statement ring; you will be shaking their hand 9 times out of 10. It is an educational place, so you probably want to save that new killer dress and heels combo for Freshers Week ;)
Keep your Fashion Q&A's coming over Formspring and I will pick out the best questions to feature on my blog next week!