5 Styles of an Aspiring Architect

It’s one of the most daunting questions we all ask ourselves… What do I wear???

I ask myself this question every single morning (sometimes the night before if I feel like saving myself that morning debate… ). And I know that most people think that only females really deliberate over what shirt to put with that skirt, but I know many a male that ponder the same thing (well, not the skirt part, but you get what I’m saying). This question became even more important when I began interviewing for my first internship and again for my first full time job. You don’t want to be too overdressed, but you also don’t want to be too casual. Although, if you are going to be one or the other, ALWAYS go with being overdressed rather than under-dressed (especially if it’s career related). But anyways, by no means am I a “stylish” person, but I at least think I have a good general idea of what to wear on certain days. So after about two years of working, I’ve put together about 5 different styles that are my “usual” for the work week. Below are my “5 Styles of an Aspiring Architect”.  

***Disclaimer*** I am in no way, nor will I ever be a model… so this is your warning… there are some pretty ridiculous poses and extremely goofy faces… Just bear with me and focus on the styles…

1. Business Casual Style (and also what I wear most Mondays…)

This is probably the style I wear like 60% of the time because it’s comfortable and easy. I’m fortunate our office is pretty laid back in that I don’t have to “dress up” very formal everyday. A dressy top or a casual blazer with some nicer jeans/pants works just fine.


2. Site Visit Style

Site visits are great when you are an aspiring architect. You learn SO MUCH from going out to see a project that you actually worked and drew on. The key for going out to construction sites are to wear long pants… I usually just wear jeans… Some sort of sleeve (no sleeveless shirts ladies and fellas) and the terribly uncomfortable steel toe boots. Missing from this picture is always stylish safety glasses, highlighter yellow safety vest, and the iconic hardhat. I usually wear a shirt that has our logo on it – hence the cheesy pose.


3. After Work Events Style

So days that I have an AIA event or a Dallas Architecture Forum Lecture after work, I try to wear something nice and somewhat dressier, but also clothes that I will be comfortable in for the entire day. On days like this, I am out from 8 am to 8 pm or later… So wearing something that looks good but is still bearable after 12 hours is key. Imagine that. Form follows function… Ha.


4. Client Meeting or Presentation Day Style

These are the days I try to look my best. Whether I’m going to a big client meeting or presenting in from of a large group, I usually wear dress pants with a formal top/jack or a nice dress. My main goal is to try to look like I belong there and possibly a bit older that I actually am… and not like someone’s “bring your daughter to work day”. This is also the style I would suggest if you are interviewing for an internship or first full time job. Sometimes firms may not be quite this dressy on a day-to-day basis, but trust me, it’s way better to go the dressier route for the interview than to show up and accidentally be under-dressed. Plus, it shows that you care about the interview and you’re taking it seriously.


5. Casual Friday Style

Ah, Fridays.. Not only do they mean the weekend, they also mean casual clothes. Jeans, a shirt, and my Vans. And yes, that is a BB-8 shirt that I’m wearing and yes, I have actually worn it to the office.





6. A BONUS! the Architect’s Style (aka… what everyone thinks Architects wear…)

I couldn’t resist… It seems like everyone’s mental image of an architect immediately puts them in all black clothes with the super thick rimmed glasses. Well, I guess I can’t really blame them, because probably 50% of architects wear black and thick rimmed glasses… Myself and husband included… sometimes.



This blog post is part of the #ArchiTalks series on the topic of “Style”. Please enjoy some of the blogs below from our February #ArchiTalks!

Bob Borson – Life of An Architect (@bobborson)
Lee Calisti, AIA – Think Architect (@LeeCalisti)
style…final words
Lora Teagarden – L² Design, LLC (@L2DesignLLC)
The AREsketches Style
Collier Ward – One More Story (@BuildingContent)
Good Artists Copy; Great Artists Steal
Eric T. Faulkner – Rock Talk (@wishingrockhome)
Name That Stile!
brady ernst – Soapbox Architect (@bradyernstAIA)
What Style Do You Build In?
Brian Paletz – The Emerging Architect (@bpaletz)
You do you
Michael LaValley – Evolving Architect (@archivalley)
Defining an Architect’s Style
Jarod Hall – di’velept (@divelept)
What’s Your Style?
Greg Croft – Sage Leaf Group (@croft_gregory)
Architectural Style
Jeffrey Pelletier – Board & Vellum (@boardandvellum)
Should You Pick Your Architect Based on Style or Service?
Samantha R. Markham – The Aspiring Architect (@TheAspiringArch)
5 Styles of an Aspiring Architect
Kyu Young Kim – J&K Architects Atelier (@sokokyu)
Loaded With Style
Nisha Kandiah – ArchiDragon (@ArchiDragon)
Regression or Evolution : Style
Keith Palma – Architect’s Trace (@cogitatedesign)
Stylized Hatred
Jim Mehaffey – Yeoman Architect (@jamesmehaffey)
What’s in a Style?
Mark Stephens – Mark Stephens Architects (@architectmark)
Architectalks 23 – Style

6 Comments on “5 Styles of an Aspiring Architect

    1. Hi Collier,
      Glad you stopped by. Thanks for the kind words and for checking out the ArchiTalks posts! It’s always so interesting to see everyone’s unique take on the topic.

    1. Thank you! The ones in the picture are actually my non-steel toe boots (they’re Rampage brand). My steel toe boots aren’t so stylish… They are Brazos.

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