DS2 has an interview, what does he wear?

(20 Posts)
EmmaWoodlouse Tue 26-Jan-16 19:48:56

He is more worried about it than we are - I think they will be much more interested in what he knows academically! However, I wondered if anyone knew what is "the convention", or could give me any feedback on what their sons wore and what happened. Getting it right might just give him an extra bit of confidence...

17 year old DS2, still at school, does not own a suit (never needed one before). School uniform is a blazer, tie, shirt, trousers.

The university in question is a former poly, not considered particularly "posh". His subject would probably involve dressing "office smart" one day if he qualifies but I'm not sure how relevant this is now.

He thinks he needs a suit, we think his school trousers (quite slim cut) and school shoes (quite trendy/slightly pointed) with any smart shirt would be quite adequate. Friends who work in unis back us up.

The trouble is, what shirt? Plain white and he's wearing two-thirds of his school uniform, which seems a bit childish somehow, but the only other shirts he owns are checked flannel ones which don't really go with smart trousers. We were looking at some shirts in town last weekend and he quite fancies a purple one. Is it OK to go that unconventional? And does he need a tie?

He also has a tiny bit of facial hair, not what you could really call a beard, think Shaggy from Scooby-Doo! He's never shaved before. I think shaving might make a better first impression, DH thinks the potential for it to go wrong and him to turn up with cuts or scabs is too high.

Any thoughts?

OP’s posts: |
BeaufortBelle Tue 26-Jan-16 19:55:12

I think he should be himself and focus on the course, what he can bring to it and what he will get out of it.

Tidy black jeans, flannel check shirt, tidy plain sweatshirt, shoes/tidy trainers/boots he's comfy in.

PS: I work for a university: clean, tidy, comfy, relaxed, himself.

EmmaWoodlouse Tue 26-Jan-16 19:56:45

Thank you so much. That sounds exactly like his normal self - I hope I can convince him to go with it!

OP’s posts: |
NewLife4Me Tue 26-Jan-16 19:59:42

Perhaps if you ask him about his future plans he might discuss them with you.
Otherwise at his age I'd be keeping out of his business tbh.
I'd have been horrified at my mum being so involved and so would my dc, who were grown up and independant at 16.
Let him sort out his own life and make his own decisions, he's an adult now.

EmmaWoodlouse Tue 26-Jan-16 20:03:49

Believe me, he is the one who is asking me what he should do!

OP’s posts: |
wickedwaterwitch Tue 26-Jan-16 20:06:29

My ds (18) wears a suit to school (6th form) so I think iiwy I'd err on the side of caution and go get as near to a suit as you can. Shirt, tie, smart shoes. And yes, ideally not stubble. Good luck to him.

I think it's nice when teenagers want help from their parents smile

BestIsWest Tue 26-Jan-16 20:15:28

DS has had a couple of university interviews in the last view weeks and wore black skinny jeans, a shirt which had a fine red/blue check ( so looked purple) and a dark grey wool sweater (it was cold). No tie. Black chelsea boots.

Honestly, there were kids there in all sorts from very casual up.

My DS wanted my advice too. Contrary to the belief of some on MN, not all 17 year olds are completely independent and confident.


boys3 Tue 26-Jan-16 20:22:12

DS1 decidedly casual, marginally erring towards smart-casual, when he had (successful) Uni interview a couple of years back. I really do think it will be about what he says rather than what he's wearing. Let him choose, but if he really thinks he'll feel most comfortable wearing a suit and tie, then that's fine too. (although noting he does not currently own a suit)

Haffdonga Tue 26-Jan-16 20:27:18

DS went to lots of uni interviews last year and nobody wore a suit. He wore a tie with shirt and smart trousers at the first interview and felt over dressed so removed the tie.

I'd avoid jeans and slogan T-shirts but CLEAN, tidy, 'smart casual' seemed to be the norm. I would get him to have a shave though. A proper beardy face is fine (if tidied) but a dusting of bum fluff just looks like a guy is grubby.Get your dh to teach him to shave carefully fgs. Buy him some posh shaving stuff and make it special.

Good luck to him in the interviews.

BeaufortBelle Tue 26-Jan-16 20:31:30

My DC are 21 and 17. They ask me and DH this sort if stuff all the time. I'm glad they want to and are able to. DS had a couple of summer job interviews last year and really wanted our input. We hope to help our children and support and encourage them for years to come.

raspberryrippleicecream Tue 26-Jan-16 20:48:39

My DS1 also wanted advice/help. He wore chinos and a smart check shirt to his (successful) nterviews before Christmas. Smart casual was definitely the order of the day he said, very, very few suits

MedSchoolRat Tue 26-Jan-16 21:22:17

I interview... I don't really notice what they wear, tbh, but I would notice if it was dirty or very disshelvelled. Or very colourful (colourful is not bad, but) teenagers hate to be conspicuous don't they, undermines their confidence, why risk it. All of the tidy versions of above would fit in. Dull colours are typical. Facial hair and spots, and parents in tow not remarkable.

People interviewing for PhD places often turn up quite scruffy, now that takes confidence.

RhodaBull Tue 26-Jan-16 21:25:23

Ds says that virtually every single boy was dressed in chino-type trousers, a shirt and a lambswool jumper. School shoes are fine.

What a mean-spirited comment, NewLife4Me. 17-year-old boys are very often not very grown up at all. I know mine isn't. In fact he nearly went off to his interview with his jumper on backwards - just in time I noticed that there was something peculiar about the neckline and realised what he'd done.

And since dcs heading off to university are presumably living at home they are very much not independent. And I really don't think asking for help regarding what to wear is displaying immaturity or implies interfering parents. I mean, I solicit advice on what to wear on certain occasions to make sure I get it right, and I am a long way from being a teenager and am extremely independent!

MedSchoolRat Tue 26-Jan-16 21:30:33

...Purple shirt, depends on precise shirt, but would probably still fit in with other applicants as long as he has confidence that he looks smart in it.

I really don't notice what's on their feet.

Molio Tue 26-Jan-16 21:37:00

Suits only for medicine interviews otherwise anything clean and comfortable but probably not with a slogan on it.

DS1 forgot cuff links and was flapping, literally, but luckily an elder sister was in town and had bought some for another brother for Christmas so whizzed along to lend them and save the day. I've sure quite a few at this age sometimes need an opinion or hand.

Kirkenes Tue 26-Jan-16 22:26:40

Have a good look through the University aperwork as I thought they usually give guidance. If not he could call and ask.

Its good if he looks smart and tidy but I imagine it doesn't matter too much. I doubt that any Uni staff want applicants racing around buying new cloths.

My DC wore black jeans and shirts but would have been fine in tee shirts. It's not an interview for a job it's an interview for a student.

I don't think it's a problem if he wants to dress more smartly in a suit or in his school uniform especially if it makes him feel more comfortable.

Hope his interview goes well. What subject is it?

AtiaoftheJulii Tue 26-Jan-16 23:08:08

Electric shaver to avoid cuts!

I have been known to ask friends and family for sartorial advice, and
I'm a perfectly independent grownup grin

JeanneDeMontbaston Wed 27-Jan-16 09:57:36

I wouldn't care or notice what someone was wearing, but I did notice a couple of students who were wearing suits and looked uncomfortable that they were the only ones in the group, so I'd agree with others he might want to consider how he'd feel if that's the case. Or he might be more like me, and feel better to be completely formal even if his interviewer is in jeans!

But absolutely no one would judge him for anything he wore. The only time you notice is when someone is uncomfortable in their clothes, and then only because you want to tell them it doesn't matter.

Best of luck to him.

EmmaWoodlouse Sat 30-Jan-16 20:05:35

Thank you for all the suggestions, everyone. He went with a checked shirt, smartish black jeans and his black school shoes in the end. I have no idea whether it made a difference but his interview went quite well! We saw about 10 other boys going for the same subject, and one was in a smart suit, one was extremely scruffy and the rest were all dressed much like DS.

OP’s posts: |
BestIsWest Sat 30-Jan-16 21:49:36

I think the most important thing is that he felt comfortable in himself. Good luck to him and hope he hears good news soon.

Join the discussion

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Join Mumsnet

Already have a Mumsnet account? Log in