Dress for Success

These are tough old times. The competition for good jobs is increasing and this autumn many people will be changing their occupations and the way that they work.

For these times, Patrick has a special approach, learned over the years, to help you dress for success.

Appreciating that usually the best turned out candidate is the one to be awarded the job or the promotion,

Patrick suggests that you look at the detail of how you dress and groom for the all important interview.

For women:

He suggests that you will wish to stand out, and one way to do this is not look like everyone else.

For an important appointment, he recommends either a dress or a dress and jacket. His third choice is a skirt, jacket and top but, especially for a job interview, suggests avoiding trousers or a shirt and blouse without a jacket.

Steer clear of black and brown, he adds, and opt instead for blue or greys; pinstripes or fleck fabrics are fine, but probably not a check.

For tops, he recommends a crew neck or scoop neck rather than the more boring V-neck.


Wolford may be expensive but has the very best range. They are worth every penny because you can wash them again and again and they never lose shape. However, if pushed, you can find cheaper versions at Uniglo or Zara.

He says, Accessorise carefully. Go for a modern pair of shoes with a slightly rounded toe and kitten heels rather than a court with a wedge or blocked heel, and wear a 20 denier tight in a colour that compliments your outfit. Keep your jewellery simple but discreet.

For men:

Keep up-to-date! This means a slimmer cut of suit, which is where fashion is right now. And do ensure that your shirt is not just new but also well fitted.


Patrick says, There is no doubt that if you adopt an old-fashioned look, your interviewers, bosses, clients and colleagues will assume that you think in old-fashioned ways too.

If you want to emphasise new fresh concepts, your dress has to reflect that.

Here's what a recent client had to say:

Hi Patrick,

I spent a day shopping with you on Thursday 17th April. I had a job interview the following Monday and for the first time ever I felt totally confident before the interview and during it.

Half of this is due to the fact I knew I was suitable for the role but the other half is because I had a great outfit on. The interviewer even commented on how fabulous I looked. That has never happened to me before!

I feel better about shopping for clothes now. I have an idea of what suits me and what doesn't.

I have found I am thinking more about what I am going to wear and the effect it has on me and those I come into contact with.


I have donated a bag of clothes to charity, as after our day together I realized they were not doing me any favours.

I wore one of the outfits you helped me choose to a pub the other evening and it felt wonderful to be the best dressed person there.

Thank you for your honest, tactful and professional approach.

Samantha S.

Patricks People Profile:

Not every woman finds it easy to find a perfect fit or necessarily enjoys the clothes shopping experience. One of my clients has just this kind of dilemma.

In her 40s and a senior businesswoman, she has a firm, athletic body shape and, rather than a size 10 or a size 12, she is more of a size 11. My recommendation was a suit made especially for her by a gifted tailor.

I accompanied her to Alistair of House of Alistair in Saville Row, and having views about what would work for her and her lifestyle, helped her to pick out a fabric, choosing the colour, texture and weight of it, and select a style on simple but chic lines. We even showed Alistair pieces from her wardrobe that had elements we wanted incorporated into the new suit.


The result, after fittings at her convenience, was an outfit that is moulded to her body, the sleeves perfectly set to her shoulders, the back of the jacket following the curve of her spine.

Of course, custom-made suits of this standard are not inexpensive and you can expect to pay between £2,000 and £8,000, depending on the quality of the fabric. But bespoke clothes have longevity, they are classic and will not date. It belongs to you in a way that high street fashion does not.

My client is thrilled because people have commented - not on the suit - but on how great she looks.