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Q&A: I got a job in tech! What do I wear?

Q&A: I got a job in tech! What do I wear?

"First, as a stylist who went from freelancing to working at a tech start-up, I completely appreciate this question!" says Thread stylist Millie Rich. "The short answer is 'Wear whatever makes you feel comfortable,' which of course means something different to everyone. But whether you usually wear a suit or pyjama bottoms, don't do anything too drastic: When you're learning the ropes in an entirely new environment, you don't want the added discomfort of wearing something you're not used to."

When the goal is to slightly change the way you look but still feel like yourself, Millie advises switching out only one or two elements of the "uniform" you usually wear to work—like trading a suit jacket for a jumper, or joggers for jeans. Below, Millie shares specific advice for guys at three points on the casual-formal spectrum.

If you're used to working from bed

"In reality, you can wear anything to most tech companies, but I'd draw the line at joggers. Instead, stick to a comfortable uniform of t-shirts, plain zip-up hoodies and trainers—plus chinos, which will make even a hoodie feel much smarter than it actually is. For trainers, stick to a simple pair with no more than two colours. Some favourites: Converse, Vans, Nike Frees and any classic New Balances."

Photographed: Gant Rugger navy chinos (£100), Sunspel hoodie (£145), Nigel Hall white t-shirt (£25), New Balance trainers (£65)

If you're used to wearing shirts to work

"You can obviously wear a shirt with jeans or chinos to work at a tech start-up, but if you want to look a bit more casual, switch to a crew-neck sweatshirt. Go for a fitted shape, which keeps it from looking sloppy. A bonus: a sweatshirt won't crease the way shirts do after hours at your desk."

Clothes to consider: Derek Rose sweatshirt (£135),  Nudie jeans (£145), New Balance trainers (£65); photographed. Gant sweatshirt (£80)

If you're used to wearing a suit to work

"Some of my clients find it hard to wear anything but a suit to work, which I understand: suits make you immediately feel sharp and professional, and completely different from the way you feel on weekends. If you're taking it down a notch, I'd start by trading your suit jacket for a jumper, which will help you look slightly more casual, but still feel like your usual work self."

Clothes to consider: John Smedley jumper (£235), Burberry shirt (£250); photographed. Peter Werth black jumper (£55), Nigel Hall shirt (£65)