CRUISE CAREER COACH: INTERVIEW WITH FASHION & STYLE EXPERT – JORDAN DECHAMBRE

CRUISE CAREER COACH: INTERVIEW WITH FASHION & STYLE EXPERT – JORDAN DECHAMBRE

Growing up in a small Wisconsin town, Jordan Dechambre merges those sensibilities with cutting-edge apparel and accessories in her role as a fashion expert. Based in Milwaukee, she’s organized many runway shows in the region and serves as a fashion blogger and featured stylist for The Bon-Ton Stores’ (among the 275 stores are Boston Store, Bergner’s, Younkers and Carson Pirie Scott) events and is also a trend expert for LOFT stores. Dechambre faithfully attends Mercedes-Benz Fashion Weeks in New York City, with an eye on taking show-stopping trends and translating them to one’s personal wardrobe. Her recaps of these glam events – paired with practical and funny seasonal-wardrobe advice – are a continued hit with viewers on the Fox network in Milwaukee’s Fox 6 “WakeUp News” and “Real Milwaukee,” who appreciate her down-to-earth attitude.  She is also a personal stylist and enjoys working one-on-one in overhauling closets, personal shopping, wardrobe consulting and dishing out advice on how to pick a look that makes you feel your best.

Since many corporate entities today have casual dress codes, what criteria should you consider when deciding what to wear for an interview?

The number-one most important thing is for you to feel comfortable. Choose an outfit that accentuates your style and personality, but is appropriate for the position you are interviewing for. And make sure the fit is perfect.

Is it appropriate for women to wear a dress or pants suit for an interview?

Yes, both are appropriate. Choose neutral colors, like black, navy, taupe or winter white, and accessorize with a few well-placed accessories.

As a student transitioning to the workplace, what basics are most important when building a professional wardrobe? 

Always start with the basics and build from there. Your wardrobe should feel like a collection; you should be able to mix and match all the pieces. So start with a black suit, neutral-colored pants, a blouse or skirt that adds a pop of color or print, and professional shoes. Then, add accessories to make it your own.

What is the best way to ensure your clothing fits well and is appropriate for your body type?

When in doubt, visit a tailor. This is especially true for men. Suits rarely fit well when bought off the rack, so they should be tailored to perfection. For women, think about your body-image concerns and choose styles that accentuate the positive.

How important are shoes?

Your look should be fabulous from head to toe. Men should make sure their shoes are well-shined. Women should choose either professional flats, or a lower heel (less than three inches). A pointy-toe, low-heel shoe is a great choice because it still elongates the leg.

What guidance can you provide regarding accessories – from jewelry to the choice of an appropriate handbag? 

A neutral satchel appropriate for taking to the workplace is a must. Invest in a piece that will be versatile and functional for your job and your life. Jewelry should express your personality and also be a proper fit for your work environment. When in doubt, choose one statement piece and stay minimal with the rest of your look.

How much do hair and makeup factor into completing a professional, polished appearance? 

Your hair is often the first thing people notice about you. It should always be well groomed, with no visible roots. Makeup should either focus on eyes or lips, never both. Also consider your nails, even the guys. Your nails should be clean and well manicured.

When a young professional has the opportunity to network with a group of executives, how can they make a great first impression through their wardrobe choices? 

Keep it simple and chic. One statement piece, like a great necklace, is enough to express your personality. Always go with the classics, like a great pencil skirt or wrap dress, paired with pumps.

As an acclaimed style expert, brand ambassador, fashion and beauty writer, what is the most valuable piece of advice you can offer about defining your personal style? 

Be confident. It’s your best accessory.