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    Intern 101: What do you wear to work?

    Joann Lui
    Jul 16, '14 10:09 AM EST

    Hi Archinect,

    As summer rolls along, I want to do a fun blog post on workwear. I go through this dilemma every morning - What do I wear to work? A lot of firms now are more casual, but do I really wear t-shirts and jeans to work? Plus we probably don't have money to buy fancy clothing, so do I just follow the simple architect-wear-black code? Recently, I realize I tend to wear white with colors, because I think going to work should be fun. But sometimes it's probably a little too much...

    One day I forgot I had a client meeting, so as usual in the morning I wore one of my bright colored pants to work - this time was super bright yellow. We drove to the client's office, where everyone was wearing black suits. My yellow pants were screaming at everyone like "LOOK AT ME!! I AM YELLOW". Even though my boss was fine with it, so did the client, I stopped wearing those yellow pants to work to avoid this embarrassing moment in the future.

    To prevent you from running into this problem like me, I asked my coworkers for help! I took a picture of each of them on a typical work day to show you what architects / designers usually wear on a business casual environment.

    1. The Black & White
    There are some people in our office that only wear black, white and grey tones. Just a simple classic look would work any day of the week. Plus you can mix and match a million different ways!

    Check out more styles and images after the break.

    View full entry >>
    (This will take you to my website.)


    Follow me @joannlui


    • vado retro

      time to give stacy and clinton a call.

      Jul 16, 14 12:52 pm  · 

      I think everyone here looks very nice, except for my personal pet peeve which is that visible toes are never appropriate at the office. Toes of either gender, to be fair.

      It can't hurt to dress up slightly more than you think you need to in case you unexpectedly have a client meeting.  But I think your yellow pants probably looked great!  Just wear them with subdued pieces.  Can't ever go wrong with a white buttoned shirt.

      Jul 16, 14 9:23 pm  · 
      Non Sequitur

      Grey tones with exceptionally flamboyant socks is my go-to wardrobe with the occasional lego cuff-link thrown in for days when extra flair is required.

      Jul 17, 14 9:02 am  · 

      Do you make your own lego cufflinks?

      Jul 18, 14 8:18 am  · 

      Donna - Thanks! That's a good point about visible toes. For some reasons, a lot of people in my office wears sandals in the summer (I am wearing sandals as we speak but it's also a Friday). And I agree it never hurts to dress up. Better look good than bad!

      Non Sequitur - Lego cuff-links just sound AWESOME! Like tint, I am curious if you make your own lego cufflinks?!

      Jul 18, 14 9:59 am  · 
      Non Sequitur

      tint & Joann... I guess I could make my own, I have enough pieces laying around. Perhaps a local craft or bead/jewellery store sells the little stems in bulk.

      I order them from some Etsy shop (my favourite are the pirate maps) but now you'll have me looking for stems next time I spot a craft store downtown.

      Jul 18, 14 4:27 pm  · 

      NonS, yes, you can find the cufflink stems at bead stores or order them online. I already have some. I'm going to make some for my husband, he is a teacher, his kids love legos, a w e s o m e ! 

      Jul 18, 14 4:55 pm  · 
      Non Sequitur

      Good to know tint.

      I gave some to members of my wedding party a few years ago.

      Jul 18, 14 6:03 pm  · 

      I got no ugly toes....go bare foot in the office all the time......but the office is just next door to my master bedroom.

      Jul 19, 14 7:11 pm  · 

      I work, these days at a 450+ corporate firm, and I still go barefoot sometimes. Dress code is good when clients come around, but is it really necessary otherwise?

      Jul 20, 14 1:46 pm  · 

      Problem is, sameold, you never know when a client or potential client is going to come around.  And I also believe that dressing nicely shows respect to your coworkers.

      Please tell me you don't actually walk barefoot on your office floor.  

      Jul 21, 14 9:46 pm  · 

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I educate architects and designers (just like you) to craft a creative career that fuels your soul, reach your goals and share your talents to the world. I strive to make your life easier and give you real actionable strategies that I’ve used to build my career step by step to working in a world renowned architectural firm. More free resources are available at

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