The Pariani Dress Code for Attorneys: Dressing for Success

Dress Code for Attorneys

Written by Steve Pariani

April 9, 2024

Dressing for Success: An Attorney’s Guide

First impressions mean a lot for attorneys, whether you’re showing up to court, meeting clients, or showing up at your law firm. 

This guide will show you the best ways to make a good impression in any setting. 

Tailored Fit

Suits, blazers, and suit jackets are a common standard in law firm dress codes. Bespoke pieces are always the best option; they’re made just for you, and they put a seamless finish on your appearance.

Leave Wrinkles at Home

One of the biggest keys to the dress code for attorney is looking clean-cut and professional. If you show up with wrinkled clothing, it throws off your wardrobe, no matter how nice your suit is. Clothes should be pressed or ironed, without any areas that look worn or tatty. If you prefer, get your business clothes dry cleaned to complete the image. 

Dress Codes for Male Attorneys

Attorneys Adjusting the tie

As a professional, it’s important to keep your wardrobe colors in line with business attire. For Suits neutrals, and classic colors are your best options. Navy, dark to medium grays, and even charcoal are ideal suit colors. If you prefer lighter tones, a subtle gray is ideal. 

Dress shirts are an absolute must to dress like a attorney. While the cut and style varies, dress shirts should be pressed and wrinkle-free. Light-colored dress shirts are standard, with most attorney choosing white, cream, or a classic light blue tone. Keep in mind that you should pair the color of your dress shirt with the color of your suit, or the rest of your ensemble. The shirt should also be well fitted, without being overly tight.

Along with the dress shirt, male attorneys are expected to wear a necktie. There are special guidelines for neckties as well. Stay with a classic look to avoid too much ‘flash.’ Classic colors are always a safe choice, and in some cases, a subtle (the keyword is subtle) pattern is acceptable.

Male attorney should avoid casual shoes, and opt for a classic dress shoe that matches their suit.

Dress Codes for Female Attorneys

Beautiful Female Lawyer/Attorneys Smiling.Confidently standing with arms crossed

Female attorneys may have more difficulty navigating law firm dress codes However, the colors should remain the same, as well as the rules for dressing down. A tailored suit is a great option for women attorneys, although for women, a black suit is more acceptable in a legal setting than it is for men. A blazer or suit jacket is typically a must in most law firms, whether you wear pants or a skirt. Skirts are perfectly acceptable for female attorneys, as long as the skirt conforms to a certain style. Avoid skirts that flare or have ruffles, as well as wrap-style skirts. The best, and most professional style, is a straight (or pencil style) skirt that reaches to the knees or below. 

Female attorneys may wear heels or flats, although the color should still be neutral, and heel height kept within reason. It’s best to try and match shoes with jewelry and other accessories. 

Dressing for Success: An Attorney’s Guide

Key Takeaway: Look polished and professional to make a great first impression.

Attorneys need to project confidence and competence. Here’s what to wear:

  • Tailored suits or blazers in classic colors (navy, gray, black for women).
  • Crisp, ironed dress shirts (light colors for men, white/light blue common).
  • Ties for men: classic colors, subtle patterns are okay.
  • Dress shoes that complement your suit.
  • Skirts for women: straight/pencil style, knee-length or below.
  • Heels or flats in neutral colors, with reasonable heel height.

Avoid: wrinkled clothes, overly flashy ties, casual shoes, revealing skirts.

You May Also Like…