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by Kaitlin Edleman | August 13, 2014


With the start of OCI, rising 2Ls are tailoring those resumes and crossing their fingers for interview slots. For those fortunate enough to land interviews, the next step after firm research and mock interviewing is to pick out an outfit.

Guys--you have it easy. Dark suit, white shirt, conservative tie. Basically, look like you have it together, get a haircut and be a professional adult human.

Ladies--things for you are a little more complicated, of course.  

Can a woman wear a pant suit and still be a professional in 2014? Who knows!

As the great pant suit debate rages on, many female law students opt for the safe more “formal” route of the skirt suit. But, unfortunately, skirt suits come with their own myriad of practical complications. First, the shirt will 100 percent become untucked from the skirt. Second, the skirt is going to inexplicably, but absolutely, rotate 180 degrees around your body with even the slightest forward momentum, forget about walking up stairs. Frantically re-tucking and wrenching a skirt back into place because the entire outfit fell apart while walking from the parking lot to the building is hardly the professional look female summer associate hopefuls are going for. 

Well, I am here with the solution to your interview attire woes. Allow me to introduce the dress suit.  A dress suit is a sheath dress made out of suit material with a matching suit jacket. Although less popular and often more difficult to find than a skirt or pant suit, dress suits are easy to wear and provide a solution to the common interview outfit dilemmas.

To begin with, a dress is not pants (shocking, I know). By wearing a dress suit, female law students prevent the breakdown of society caused by women appearing in pants in the legal workplace. Additionally, dresses are often more ready to wear than pants, so they likely won’t need to be tailored unlike pant hems. They also solve the conundrum of ruining the hem of your pants because you walked to the interview in flats and switched to heels because you didn’t want to ruin your heels while walking to the interview.

Moreover, a dress is superior to a skirt and a shirt because a dress can’t become untucked (another shocker). A dress stays in place, the back zipper won’t suddenly appear in the front while walking, so you won’t have to fidget with it or straighten it out, giving you one less thing to worry about and allowing you to focus on the content of the interview, which is what is most important anyway.  

Those interviewing for OCI should do their best to appear professional and capable. Knock the interviewers away with your personality and legal prowess so they won’t care what you’re wearing! Good luck everyone!

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