Wardrobe rebuild for work

I am an IB analyst about to start my FT job in July. I wanted some help rebuilding my wardrobe. Specifically looking for formal and semi formal outfits to wear to the office, client meetings, and office social events. According to you guys what should my wardrobe consist off?
Also particularly curious about what does an average outfit look for you guys when are you in the office.
Thanks for all your help.

Comments (18)

Most Helpful
Jun 20, 2022 - 10:14am
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:
  1. Don't buy everything at once. Wait until you actually start and then make adjustments as you see what the culture is at your company
  2. Your time off is going to be precious with all the long hours you will be putting in. So get stuff that's easy to maintain. Almost all good brands now have stuff that is machine wash, wrinkle-free. Buy exclusively from those collections. No "dry clean only" items.
  3. Accessories matter. Make sure you invest in a good pair of shoes, a good belt and all of the other small things that people will notice
  4. Hygiene matters. Make sure your nails are clean, hair is always done and your clothes are clean at all times. Try to not wear the same shirt/pants more than once a week

Good luck!

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  • 7
  • Analyst 1 in IB - Gen
Jun 20, 2022 - 11:19am

Thanks for the response, really helpful. Just curious, what are some essential items you'd recommend I buy before the job starts. Would love to here what you are seeing analysts wear in your office.

Also wanted your opinion on what kind of shoes and belts to buy. Would like some recommendations on styles of shoes/belts or products you like to wear.

Jun 20, 2022 - 11:30am
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Get enough chinos and shirts (mostly oxfords) to get you through each workday (at least 5, more if you can). Try to buy one extra shirt that you can keep at work just in case you ever have a wardrobe failure. For now, focus on basic solid colors like white, blues, sands/khaki, charcoal/black. Get yourself at least one good sportcoat, navy or charcoal, and wear that according to what you see others doing in the office. After that, you just apply some common sense to how you mix things up i.e. don't wear black pants with a white oxford, that makes you look like a waiter. 

For shoes, make an investment in something that can be re-crafted like Allen Edmonds. I know they can be a bit of money when you're young, but if you consider that they will last you a long time (decades, if you treat them right), they make sense as a purchase. 

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  • 3
Jun 20, 2022 - 5:39pm
Kevin25, what's your opinion? Comment below:

agree with everything except for last sentence. is it really smart to buy 5+ pants just to change them every day? and you need to have a top to each pants, if we're talking about suits, so it can be quite expensive, especially if you gain/lose weight and have to buy 5-10 more pants couple of sizes up/down.

Jun 20, 2022 - 7:19pm
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

We're not talking suits, we're talking chinos. Even if we were though, wearing the same clothes multiple times is rarely a good idea. 

  1. It's poor hygiene (can't believe I have to tell this to a grown man)
  2. Life happens. You will have spills, rub up against something on the subway, etc. You don't want to have to do laundry mid-week, nothing sucks more than that. 
  3. IB is long hours and those pants will be on you from the moment you leave until you get back. So that's anywhere from what, 12 to 16 hours? Maybe more on some really long days? 
  4. It's summer. Things will sweat. You can't help it. 
  5. Just like most clothing items, the more you wear them, the faster they will wear out. By rotating and only wearing pants 1/week versus 2/week you will get more long-term wear on them (less wear, less washing, etc). So, yes, its a bigger investment up front but will ultimately save you more money in the long run.
  6. Even if you do repeat pants - gross - you still want to have back-ups in case something tears or stains. That's just life, it will happen. You want to be prepared. 

Again, the kid specifically said IB. Those are long hours. You WILL NOT want to spend your precious free time having to tend to your clothes. Just get as much as you need up front and then rotate out and minimize the amount of time you will have to spend on laundry and use that for rest instead. You will be much happier in the long run if you do this. 

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  • 5
Jun 21, 2022 - 10:30am
The_Finance_Flunky, what's your opinion? Comment below:

This comment is dead-on. WAIT until you see how your office dresses. I work at an EB, and post-COVID dress code has changed significantly (pre-COVID you would have found me in slacks and a blazer most days, now I almost exclusively wear chinos/lululemon pants and a button-down oxford). Still worth it to go buy a nice navy suit, and a blazer, but hold off on anything too formal until you see how your fellow bankers dress. Also, I have a very simple wardrobe (exclusively white and light blue shirts, and navy pants) which, while boring, has made "clothing selection" extremely easy each morning. Good luck

Jun 20, 2022 - 11:22am
Vænnen, what's your opinion? Comment below:

The following works well for me (Analyst PE):

- Four suit jackets, eight pairs of pants (two per suit jacket, try to get them with side adjusters -> no belt needed)

- Ten shirts (Four white, four light blue, two pink for Fridays). Would go for French cuff shirts btw

- One pair of chinos (Fridays)

- At least two pairs of dress shoes (can add more pairs later on), clean sneakers (Fridays)

- A couple of sweaters/ vests for autumn/ winter

- Get name brand socks/ boxers, it makes a difference especially during those 90h weeks

Jun 20, 2022 - 5:04pm
Arroz con Pollo, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Vænnen

The following works well for me (Analyst PE):

- Four suit jackets, eight pairs of pants (two per suit jacket, try to get them with side adjusters -> no belt needed)

- Ten shirts (Four white, four light blue, two pink for Fridays). Would go for French cuff shirts btw

- One pair of chinos (Fridays)

- At least two pairs of dress shoes (can add more pairs later on), clean sneakers (Fridays)

- A couple of sweaters/ vests for autumn/ winter

- Get name brand socks/ boxers, it makes a difference especially during those 90h weeks

Who wears cuff links nowadays

  • Analyst 2 in IB - Gen
Jun 20, 2022 - 8:00pm

Damn I feel like a lot of people commenting here have a lot of dress clothes -- maybe because they bought their wardrobe precovid? Since covid dress code has relaxed a lot -- at my EB nobody wears a suit anymore, pretty much exclusively dress shirts and pants. 

My work wardrobe:

Two suits (only worn if there's going to be an in person client meeting, ie: never), a sport coat, four pairs of pants (including the two from the suits), 5-7 dress shirts, one nice pair of shoes / belt.  

Jun 21, 2022 - 11:37am
GoingToBeAnMD, what's your opinion? Comment below:

Do you not have a lot of dress clothes??? Most people that have a lot of clothes, like me, like to maintain a certain aesthetic at all times. It's OK to dress for other stuff that's not work, you know? 

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Jun 22, 2022 - 1:20pm
bigorange2000, what's your opinion? Comment below:

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