Do you need to look like an adult for a day? Need to really put together an outfit that doesn’t scream ‘I bought this from Forever 21!’ even though you only have a Forever 21 budget? Don’t worry, I’m here to help.

Whether it be a job interview or a internship in an office, this guide will help you get started.

First of all, evaluate your closet.

Pull out anything that you think could be adult-ish, then evaluate again. Does it have a stain on it? Does it fit? Does it look like someone from this century would wear it in public? If any of your clothes fall into these categories, donate them. Get them out of your wardrobe because they aren’t doing you any favors and confusing you.

Second, get basics.

I know you’ve heard it all before, basics are the foundation to a wardrobe. But I’m going to let you into a little secret, you adult wardrobe basics don’t have to be boring.

Buy the classic blue button up, but pick one that has a twist to it. I have a button up that is oversized with rolled up sleeves and flowy fabric. Not only is it appropriate for me to wear to my office job, but it puts character into my otherwise boring outfit. (plus its great for large chested girls who struggle with buttonhole bulging)

This is a list of basics you should have in your wardrobe for the budding adult dresser.

  • 2 Button up Shirts – Stick to blue, black or white. If you want patterns, keep them simple.
  • 1 Blazer that fits – Yes, you need a blazer, and yes it needs to fit. Don’t settle on a blazer that is to short for your arms or tight in the shoulders, if anything, get it a little bit bigger. Stick to a black blazer at first then go off and get a trendy baby pink one.
  • 2 Blouses – These can be a bit more casual, and depending on whether or not you think showing your arms in the workplace is acceptable or not, they can be sleeveless (sometimes it gets hot in an office, I’m sure you won’t be persecuted for indecency if you show your shoulders) But these are some important things to remember, your bra strap should never be able to show, NEVER. I’d avoid spaghetti straps and weird back cut outs. Also, your shirt shouldn’t be too low cut. I like the bend-over test, if you bend over, can someone see down your shirt? If so, I’d pick another shirt. Learn from my own mistakes and just avoid the drama.
  • 2 Pairs of Work Pants – Black, gray or even dark blue. These pants should be mid to high rise and not to tight. I like mine to be slim in the leg and a little bit cropped, but other then that, it’s up to you to decide what work pants look like.
  • A good pair of Work Shoes – Again, stick to basic colors, but have fun with the shoe. Flats are a good choice for your first pair, but don’t shy away from a nice pair of heals. But make sure they’re comfortable!

This is a good start, and you can create a lot of different outfits from this selection. All of these pieces can be found at your local mall for a relatively good price. Just don’t expect a $30 blazer to last long and have pockets.