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Dressing for an interview on a budget

Estimated reading time: 2 mins

Chances are, if you’re looking for a job, you might not have a ton of disposable income to spend on interview apparel. It’s a common problem experienced by job seekers these days, but there is no need to worry if you’re in this position as well. Just a little creativity, a bit of extra effort, and maybe some coupons, and you’ll be look’in flashy in a flash!

First, check your own closet for basics such as button-downs which can be worn under a suit jacket, modest dresses in neutral shades, black or navy belts and handbags and shoes to match. You may have worn-down shoes or shirts missing buttons which can be used in a pinch, if you have a bit of time before the interview but not money to replace the entire garment. Just polish your gently scuffed shoes, after wiping them clean of dust or lightly cleaning off any substances on the visible surfaces, and sew on replacement buttons yourself – it’s easy enough for anyone to do by hand, and there are videos on YouTube to show you how to quickly accomplish it yourself. Sweat or coffee stains, lower buttons missing, and worn-out belts can all be hidden under a nice-looking jacket, if you’re careful!

Next, try shopping at consignment or even thrift stores for the least expensive options, which will range from brand new to lightly used or even slightly damaged items. Give yourself time to look, and check back once a week or so, for bargains that will fit your budget and look perfectly nice on an interview. Accessories like handbags and belts are often in pristine condition at these shops, and you may get lucky and find an entire suit in your size!

Of course, you can always stick to online shopping for interview outfits, if you’re savvy about it. Websites like USC.co.uk often have promo codes available to save more off already affordable prices click here to see. You can sign up for email alerts from any online retailer for sale information sent right to your inbox. Try to find sites with free return shipping or return-to-store policies, if you aren’t sure which sizes will fit you best.

Finally, if you’re really strapped for cash and absolutely cannot buy anything new, try reaching out to the people you know. Many of your friends will have work-appropriate items that could be made to fit you, as long as you are careful and return the item in the same condition it was lent to you. Parents, siblings and friends of friends make an excellent extended closet for a sweet talker with an interview to attend, but be sure to thank them appropriately when you get the job!

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This post is part 4 of 4 in the series Style

About the author /


Simon is a creative and passionate business leader dedicated to having fun in the pursuit of high performance and personal development. He is co-founder of Applied Change, a Business Change consultancy based in the UK. Simon is also an Ambassador for Gloucestershire business. Simon is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Professional Development.

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SimonStapleton.com located at Watledge , Stroud, UK . Reviewed by 10,923 readers rated: 9.5 / 10
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