Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Lawyering, 101

At my first attorney's meeting today downtown at the New York County Lawyer's Association, I decided it was the perfect time to buck the 'suit only' norm and find a suitable substitute (haha). I stood in front of my closet for no less then 15 minutes last night, trying to find the perfect mix of professional and fashionable, with enough coverage for another 20 degree day in a slue of plummeting temperatures. I landed on a black, high-waisted Ann Taylor pencil skirt, black opaque tights, a french blue dress shirt from J.Crew, a wide Prada belt with gold embellished buckle, and black patent spectator pumps.

I shouldn't have worried for a moment about my outfit, because upon arrival at the meeting, a quick scan of the mostly 20-something new lawyers in the room revealed few had run a comb through their hair let alone merchandised an appropriate ensemble for the occasion. With the exception of a tall guy seated to my right decked out in a charcoal Hugo Boss suit and Cole Haan loafers, I couldn't find a single person doing justice to my new profession. Skirts clung to legs with the telltale Velcro-like static that only cheap polyester can truly create, jackets pulled at arm holes and puckered along closures, and shoes were scuffed beyond recognizability (which was probably better than revealing the dregs of where they may actually have been purchased).

Rather than stocking up on 2 cheap suits from JCPenny, go to Ann Taylor or J.Crew and buy whatever suit happens to be on sale. (That is how I accumulated the 3 suits I own, which are reserved only for occasions that explicitly require an actual suit, such as being sworn in to the New York bar on Monday.) A well made suit will actually make you look and feel slimmer. Instead of stocking up on multiple pairs of work shoes at Payless, buy just one pair of basic black pumps on sale at Bloomingdales, who cares if they are last season? A well made, quality black pump is a black pump. Plus, when a good shoes gets worn, the shoe repair man can actually fix it. If the shoes are cheap, there is little that can be done to save it once it goes and you will end up spending more money on yet another pair of uglies. (This happened to me repeatedly in college when my $30 bar shoes would need new soles, and the repair man would look down at me and tell me there was nothing he could do.) One more lawyer's event next Monday should provide more fuel for my fashion fire.....


  1. OMG, do I know how you can stare! Those poor tunnel folks. I'm sure if they knew they'd be subjected to your withering looks, they would have purchased an outfit for the occasion!

  2. Terrible~nothing I hate more than ugly shoes.


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