Sartorial Musings: The fashion perks of attending a networking dinner.


What do the lead counsel for the Leveson Enquiry and a scarlet-haired female in a matching scarlet dress have in common? They both shared the ‘experience’ of dining with me last week, and both impressed with their choice of attire. As a Law student, I sell my soul and my dignity on a regular basis. In exchange for this, wining and dining is a common occurrence – the annual dinner hosted by my college Law Society being a paradigm instance of this. Bradley Cooper would perhaps call this a ‘silver lining’. Personally, I prefer the term ‘final nail in the coffin’.  Whilst some of my peers sniffed out business cards and mini-pupillages like drug-addled addicts seeking out crack, I diverted my attention away from securing guaranteed financial security for life to other, more pressing matters. The wine, for starters, and then, of course, the clothes.

What does one wear to a dinner littered with alumni as well as students? Well, apparently (almost) anything goes. Robert Jay QC of the Leveson Enquiry entranced me with his delightful choice of tie. His decision to adorn his neck with bursts of colourful flowers and butterflies was unsurprising given his reported tendency to hand write all notes in pink ink, and a welcome contrast to the charcoal androgyny of the masses. Similarly, the President of the society – the scarlet-haired female in the matching scarlet dress – attracted considerable attention. Some may question whether this is a case of colour coordination gone a step too far. I dispute such suggestions: the nod to Valentine’s Day and her choice to shun conservative tradition can only be applauded. In an environment where orthodoxy and misogyny are the perceived order of the day, it is warming to realise that maybe – just maybe – such stereotypes are not quite as penetrating as we might first believe. Perhaps there is a ‘silver lining’ to be found after all.




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