Last Saturday evening was my first shift as part-time host at a newly opened restaurant here in Providence. It’s basically upscale casual dining in a sleek, mature atmosphere with live jazz music on weekends.
I’ve never worked in food service before, and wishing to project a respectful and professional demeanor, I wore:
- a light blue pinpoint oxford
- a navy & white stripe repp tie
- a charcoal & navy blue gun-club check sport coat
- navy blue worsted trousers
- black calf belt
- charcoal socks
- black cap-toe oxfords
The manager was very happy with my performance but suggested that my attire was too ‘mature,’ even ‘dated,’ and that I looked more like a patron than an employee. In hindsight, I can understand the criticism. While I know I looked sharp, I didn’t exactly look like I worked in a restaurant, which is, I suppose, what’s expected of me.
So tell me, gentle readers: How does one dress appropriately for this line of work and still look smart and stylish? Maybe you’ve been in this situation. Tell me: Have I been condemned to a workplace wardrobe of dark, shiny dress shirts and black pants?
- thebizness answered: Try simplifying the majority of the outfit and just wearing your most favorite accessory or two, no more.
- p3knlograph answered: …really cant see anything wron with it, but I guess you can ask the manager what he expects from you.
- exilebibliophile answered: Did you not have the required number of pieces of flair?
- afistfulofstyle answered: I’m no expert, but I think sticking to dark solids is your best bet (i.e. charcoal trousers/navy shirt/black shoes). Maybe no sport coat/tie?
- willpasquill answered: I’d suggest ditching the sport coat, and consider rolling up the sleeves and tucking in the tie. Consider wearing black, if your coworkers do
- whitebucksandrum answered: While your manager may feel a little outclassed, your patrons will appreciate the effort.
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