By Dana Avidan Cohn
Updated May 30, 2014 @ 12:15 pm
Credit: ImaxTree, Courtesy (2)

Listen up, new graduates and job-hunting millennials: This post is for you.

If you are trying to get your foot in the fashion door, whether it be for an internship or a full-time gig, that first impression on your stylish potential employer is crucial. Before you buy anything, take a look at what you already have in your closet. "Lucy, where's my white collarless blouse from Fred Segal?!" If you didn't get that reference, I can't help you.

But seriously, is there a great pair of pumps or a skirt that you could work around? Do you have a friend or relative who would lend you an outfit-making bag for the interview? It's OK to fake it until you make it—then you can buy it for yourself!

Now for some style advice: It's just as important to research the culture of the office as it is the job itself. If you are not going for a banker job, ditch the conservative suit and show off your style by putting together separates, like the Nonoo look (above, left) and the Altuzarra look (below).

Credit: Courtesy

Fashion positions, by nature, require a sense of awareness in the market, so research collections to see how designers are styling looks and what colors are trending for the season. It can help to train your eye before you shop. If you have been deep in the college bubble you may not be exposed to the right types of trends (read: sweatpants with the name of your school on them). One of the biggest problems is, of course, your budget, because if you don't have a job yet it's hard to rationalize a big spend. I'm going with a shoestring approach to this: Everything in this post is under $100. Challenge extended, challenge accepted.

Credit: Courtesy

Outfit (at top, right): H&M skirt, $35,; Mango pullover, $60,

Accessories (above): Zara sandal, $90,; Kate Spade Saturday earrings, $20,; Zara handbag, $80,; Kate Spade Saturday ring, $15,

Follow Dana on Twitter (@InStyleDana) for more expert fashion advice!