Interview Attire


What is your interview attire Archinecters? 

Does it vary according to where you are interviewing? Do you have a fixed attire for all your interviews? 

Jul 4, 19 11:57 am
Non Sequitur

Pressed shirt and pants, tie is debatable depending on the office.  Perhaps their web-page can give a hint at the office culture.  I'd make sure you have some fine shoes tho... that's rather important IMO.

Jul 4, 19 12:08 pm

Do you wear a jacket and would you take it off before the interview starts if it's hot?

Non Sequitur

I would leave it on. I sometimes wear a suit or sport jacket during the summer just because, and it's routinely 30 to 35c here during the summer.


I went in my interview with shorts and flip flops and a cig hanging out of my mouth. 

Jul 4, 19 12:40 pm
Non Sequitur

If you present me with a (room temp) Labatt 50 in addition to that stellar attire... don't even bother. Just report straight to the project manager inform them you're now the new king.


And how did that work out for you OneLostArchitect, judging from your username not so good ;-)


I still like to wear a suit.

Jul 4, 19 12:43 pm

What if it is summer and it's very hot? Would you keep the jacket on?

Non Sequitur



Yes. The whole notion of less casual attire being uncomfortable is usually based in people buying clothes that don’t fit in the wrong fabrics.


A summer-weight suit in cotton or linen can be bought pretty inexpensively these days. Just make sure you get it properly fitted and altered by a tailor.


Suit, dress shirt and nice shoes will get my attention, no matter how the office setting is. 

Jul 4, 19 1:18 pm

Exactly.  The applicant should demonstrate that are trying to show respect and that they made an effort to look professional.


you don't have to wear the jacket while driving to the interview.  Just put it on before you go in the front door.  They should have good enough air conditioning once you're inside.   Don't take the jacket off until you're back at your car.

Jul 4, 19 7:02 pm

" They should have good enough air conditioning once you're inside." ...I rage at this cultural expectation.


Shirt pressed and untucked, all buttons closed, sometimes with a cardigan or just a nice plain jumper/pullover, pressed pants, polished boots or clean sneakers. Oh and head shaved, and beard trimmed...

Jul 5, 19 4:16 am

Not sure about the head shaved part or why unless that's just your personal taste for appearance but a good hair cut and if you have a beard that it be trimmed. Not everyone is into the bald head look so being bald isn't necessary for looking professional at an interview.


It’s my attire, not saying everybody else should shave their heads and grow a beard :-)


here's my dress history

job 1: sneakers and a rugby shirt. hair was a mess because the interviewer called me up at about 10am and asked if i could meet before lunch.

job 2: phone only. wore a suit to the first day and got picked on by a colleague.

job 3: personal connection, no interview.

job 4: 3 rounds of interviews. wore my lucky blue-checker shirt and cheap zara jacket to all 3 rounds. bought nice new sneakers for the interview.

all of these interviews resulted in hiring. i think there has been a huge shift in dress patterns for people my age, and i would screen out any firm that doesn't get that. no one wants to work for the guy who thinks polished shoes and a bright smile are gonna win us some projects.

Jul 5, 19 11:19 am
Non Sequitur

I disagree, nice shoes > dirty white sneakers every time. But then again, I assume there is a portfolio & CV attached to the choice of footwear.


@midlander, what kind of offices were these? Large corporate?Small?


Nice shoes is one thing. Perfectly polished leather shoes.... maybe.. maybe not. It depends on the shoes of course but it shouldn't look all worn out and ragged. I usually don't wear white shirts but a decent clean shirt would be something I think would be more what people would want to expect. If you have sufficient time, have a hair cut and beard trim if you have a beard. I know the descriptions for attire have been male oriented but there probably should be some discussion as it pertains to women being interviewed for a job.

If you're going to comment on women's interview attire ... please be a woman.


Expanding that logic: if you're going to comment on interview attire, please be someone who has interviewed (and preferably successfully). And if you're going to comment on working in the profession, have real experience in it.  Articles of incorporation do not equal experience. This person stated in the health insurance thread a few threads below this one that he's on his state's subsidized insurance program for very low income people (< $18k annually), yet continues to dispense all sorts of career and financial advice to architects as if he's actually operating a functioning architecture firm.


As for interview attire: mirror the normal work-week (but not casual Friday) dress of the people who work there - preferably those a few rungs up from what you're aiming for. In some firms sneakers would be fine. In others they're ok for "behind the scenes" production people, but if you interview looking like the guy who spends all his time on renderings, you might be unwittingly limiting the roles for which you're considered. If you're going for a public-facing position you might want to go with what that firm's most conservative client might expect to see you wear to a dinner meeting. Granted for some firms that might still be sneakers...

+1 for JBeaumont. Solid advice.


EA, I wasn't making a comment on women attire other than there is some lack of such discussion on the thread. I intentionally wasn't talking about women attire. I only made a brief observation regarding the lack of women discussing interview attire of women interviewing for a job.

Non Sequitur

I'm just going to leave this here in case someone needs to put out the eventual dumpster fire.  I'm out tonight at a football (CFL) game.  


Appears that N.S. did make a edit to his reply or something. As it currently stands as written at the time of this reply, I agree that nice shoes beats worn out shoes/sneakers any day for an interview. It maybe different if the interview was an on the jobsite kind of interview where you come to a construction site. We are talking about pretty common basic stuff that you would or should expect with any office oriented job/career. Dress like you give a damn about your appearance vs. not giving a shit iota.


You need something better than that. This dumpster fire substance has magnesium.

I wasn't trying to call you out specifically Rick. I was simply trying to throw a bucket of water on the embers you started. I realize that it may have simply prolonged the inevitable.


:) Good enough.


@NS my sneakers were pristine, black, and tasteful. i agree don't just wear dirty old running shoes. the key thing is that you believe strongly in the aesthetic merit of what you're wearing. don't think if you just pick up whatever $35 pair of leather shoes at kohl's that anyone is going to be impressed by how you dress.


@robhaw job1: mid sized boutique name brand designer job2: large "XYZ" corporate office job3: local firm job4: large international AE company. i guess my point is go for nice/normal - no need to go buy a new suit or anything. Mostly I've found that "normal" scheduled and well prepared interviews are uncommon. Only job 4 required multiple rounds and extensive preparation, and that one was through a recruiter so I had no insight into the firm or culture ahead of time.

Non Sequitur

^Yes. I said nice shoes, not specifically dress shoes. Now that I think about it, I could use a crisp pair of black dress-casual "sneakers".

My first couple of jobs I did the whole suit and tie thing, but it seemed to get joked about more than anything. On the one hand, it was a decent icebreaker and made me stand out to the interviewers, but on the other hand, it was because they felt I was overdressed. I still got offers from those interviews, so it still worked out in my favor ... but it did make me rethink my approach. I feel that as the interviewee you should never be less dressed up than the interviewers, but not so much that it's over the top.  

I generally try to figure out what the general dress is like at the office I'm interviewing at and then take it a step further. For example, if everyone wears jeans in the office, make sure you're wearing slacks for the interview. If everyone tends to not wear a tie, add a tie for the interview. If everyone wears jackets regularly, make sure you're wearing a three-piece suit or tuxedo (kidding, just wear a jacket and tie). 

For me (and my area) this results in: dress shirt, tie, slacks, dress shoes, sweater (if weather appropriate). Jacket depends on the office. Most of these offices are medium to large firms with a pretty significant regional presence, usually a national presence, and then some with international presence (the larger design-focused or corporate firms).

Qualifying statement: I was interviewing for a new job earlier this year. I had multiple offers where I was leaving a salary more than 4x what JBeaumont referred to above, and ended up with over $30k more than I was making at the place I left. YMMV

Jul 5, 19 2:47 pm

are hush puppies ok for shoes?  Do they need a leather sole? 

Jul 5, 19 6:24 pm

Nobody's likely to refuse to hire you based on vibram-soled shoes. But personally I pretty strongly associate hush puppies with Dilbert-type engineers (with chinos and polo shirts). Even if that's your preferred work look, you should own a nicer pair of shoes for interviews and special occasions.


And what about a polo shirt with a tie?

You can never go wrong with a polo bolo.

( o Y o )

Careful man, there’s a beverage here!

Jul 5, 19 11:21 pm



Wait till you hear my concept.

Jul 6, 19 12:48 pm

Oh yes! The turtleneck.


cant go wrong with this

Jul 6, 19 1:27 pm

Interviewer attire. #Solid. 

Jul 7, 19 8:06 pm

Datz Dietaah.

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