|From my polo wearing Chicago Rush days…|
I remember the day vividly, I just accepted a job as an intern with the DePaul Athletic department and I thought to myself, “I have nothing to wear!” Sure my wardrobe was sufficiently stocked with combinations for any occasion, but this situation was different. This warranted a shopping trip, and Im not talking a walkthrough in Nordstroms. My mom and I headed straight for JCrew, circa 2000…..The Khaki Years.
After trying on 15 pairs of khakis and 20 polos, I had walked away with enough khaki/polo combinations to make any Connecticut boy jealous. The question is, why did I feel the need to change my style and everyday look for this silly internship? And why did I need to pollute my closet with such items! The answer, to fit in, to conform, to be accepted, to play the part….the list goes on….it was the Khaki Kulture.
|Oh look, another polo…|
From men’s basketball to women’s soccer to marketing to the front desk, khakis and polos were the staple “go-to” in college athletics. Sure the combination can be quite comfortable, but does it separate you from the rest? Does it allow you to make a name for yourself and create your own identity? The real question is, why not be daring? Why not separate you and your work in a positive way? No, your dress and style does not define you in the work place, however it can have a strong impact. First impressions are impactful, so why not continue to make those impressions on a daily basis and not just on your interview day. Take a risk and apply something different to your wardrobe……tunic, leggings, boots, the right accessories and you have yourself an outfit with just as much flex and comfort.
In Basic Black (The Essential Guide for Getting Ahead at Work and in Life), Cathie Black discusses her take on the word “risk”. “Her advice is to “…think about about risks in the right way and use it your advantage”.
|Taking risks.. I won best dressed |
Next time before you reach for the khaki’s in your closet, think about taking a risk. Make the transition slowly and substitute the polo for a silk blouse or a cotton tee with vest. So you dont have these items in your closet?? So add them! You can never go wrong with a few trendy pieces! No one says that you have to go to Saks to get it, try TJ Maxx, Old Navy, Gap and H&M. Working in sports means you are on a budget, so be creative with the pieces you have, and spoil yourself every once in a while with a trendy item!
Start with this blouse from Gap. Not only is it on sale, but its extremely versatile. Its Monday morning and you just worked the weekend, pair the blouse with a pair of dress slacks and some gold accessories from Forever 21. Going to dinner after work? Swap out the khakis with a pair of dark jeans and you are set! You’ve just spent $45 on two outfits…BOOM!
Channel your sportsanista and separate yourself from the Khaki Kulture.