Law and Fashion

I just came across this ABA Journal article. It was published back in January so I apologize if some of you have already read this. It brings up an excellent point, where has the professional look gone?

One of the many Q & As I recently came across was how to dress for law school. It recommended a suit by your second year but for the most part it suggested business casual for classes. I chuckled at this because from my experience with law students they usually fall into two categories: those who dress up for law school daily and those who treat it like undergrad. Granted I haven't attended law school yet and can only base my opinion off of the fact that
I've watched three dear friends go through law school and am quite familiar with their school's environment. I also had a roommate from hell who is a law student. My roomie started out wearing yoga pants and board shorts to class everyday. I was happy when she moved to dressy jeans but her lack of underwear and the resulting ass crack drove me crazy. Honestly, who wants to see that? There were also women who judged other women for not wearing the latest styles. Honestly, who has time to keep up with fashion in law school? Are you crazy? I do not plan on wearing heals everyday for three years when flats will be sufficient. There were those who wore baseball hats and warm-ups. And those who dressed normal as in, jeans-a nicer shirt and casual shoes, and dressing up when the occasion arose. I will be falling into the later category. I won't be wearing Crocs to class everday. I won't wear pajama bottoms to lecture. I'll try not to wear jeans too often as well. I'd like my professors and classmates to say, "she always looks nice but doesn't overdo it." We've all judged someone by the way they look so why would you want to risk your image by dressing lazy? I just don't get it.

I used to work for my state's Department of Labor and was requested (albeit in a somewhat sexist manner) to dress professionally every day. I was fine with it at first but after awhile I realized that there was no point in it since I wasn't in meetings all day and rarely saw anyone. I kept a pair of Uggs under my desk and wore them in the winter to keep warm and nobody said anything. Granted, this was the state I was working for. I still took time out to look nice though because I believe looking clean and put together still says something about the kind of person you are.


  1. Prue said...
    I am so glad you posted this because as of lately, what to wear to class has been my latest law school concern. I think I'm with you: I'll wear jeans rarely, but I'm also not going to wear a suit everyday. But I need a new wardrobe. (Nice excuse to go shop.) I don't want to overdo it, but I think personal experience plays a lot into the way people perceive you, both professionally and intellectually.
    Shells said...
    Slightly off topic - what do people think is appropriate attire for a law school visit? Not a preview weekend, but one that will involve meeting with the Dean of Admission, as well as sitting in classes with actual students? Jeans, even nice ones, seem too casual, but I don't want stick out like a sore thumb in classes I'm visiting worse than I already will. Thoughts?
    Kel said...
    As I did not visit any law schools I don't know what to say. Biz casual? I think confidence is more the key.

    I am trying hard to not use it as an excuse to go shopping. However I have been picking up a few things here and there. I guess I'll wait until Sept. when I can gauge my wardrobe better. You know, fit in but look prof.

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