So That’s the Uniform?

There are a lot of things that are unpleasant on the journey towards becoming a licensed architect. I’m sure these unpleasantries don’t stop once licensure is achieved but as I’ve avoided the real world for as long as possible, I cannot attest to such. I guess we’ll call it intuition. So what’s not to like?

  • Long hours in studio producing a project that is always due but never finished.
  • A review juror pointing out the slightest omission or error that never once crossed your mind during the 47th straight hour of your all-nighter.
  • AIA, NCARB, NAAB, IDP, ARE and all the other evil acronyms.
  • Entering a profession that receives very little gratitude and even less monetary compensation.

But its not all bad.  Being an architect allows one of the best uniforms out there.  I know the perception is that architects dress themselves in all black (and the ones you probably see getting publicity actually do wear all black) that is just one option among many.  For the adventerous they can don a cape.  There are two professions allowed to wear capes: architects and superheros.  They are not always one and the same.  All architects are superheros but not all superheros are architects.  Its the whole all squares are a rectangles but not all rectangles are squares.

Architecture formal consists of jeans, a button-up collared shirt, and your favorite sports coat.  If the sports coat is corduroy, even better.  Dress shoes are optional and not necessary.  And if you decide to go with them anything too formal should be avoided.  Neckties are actively discouraged.  This uniform fits squarely between casual and formal.  Its not your polo shirt and khaki pants approach taken by most retail ventures and its not your shirt and tie (maybe suit) look required of businessmen.  Its just like the profession of architecture- a combination of art and science.

So last night I was looking my best in jeans, blue button up w/white pinstripes, and charcoal blazer w/white pinstripes as my studio presented our project to the East 10th Street Community Board.  Oh yeah, facial hair isn’t a problem either.


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