Career

Dress for the job you want by shoplifting for the wardrobe you can’t yet afford

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There’s only one thing standing between you and your dream job. It’s not your sub-par academic record, your lack of relevant experience or your poor work ethic. No, the only thing you need to start living your best life is a £480 trouser suit from Whistles.

100% wool-twill cloth, wide-legged trousers, a double-breasted blazer: it’s a flattering and versatile piece of tailoring that’ll make you feel like Hillary, Beyoncé and Sheryl Sandberg rolled into one. The worldly incarnation of a boss bitch goddess!

The shop attendant glared at you when you tried it on, with a look that said “please girl, you can’t afford that.” And yes, she was spot on. But don’t let something as inconsequential as having reached your overdraft limit prevent you from possessing an item of clothing the universe clearly believes is rightfully yours.

Sure, your last attempt at shoplifting ended with your mum picking you up from a Tammy Girl stockroom and a three-month grounding. But you’re older and sneakier now, and grand theft isn’t as big a deal as people make it out to be. All you have to do is follow our three easy steps, and you’ll be well on your way to achieving those #CareerGoals.

Step one – the disguise

Seeing as you’ve popped into the store to try on the trouser suit every lunch break for the past four weeks, the shop assistant may recognise you. Therefore, you’ll need a convincing disguise. That floor-length fur coat you found in your grandma’s attic when she died is classy and roomy, great for concealing stolen goods. Add a pair of oversized Primark sunglasses and a beret, et voila: incognito chic.

Step two – act like you belong

Remember, this is a classy place frequented by the ‘well to do’, so in order go unnoticed you must act like one of them. You can do this by loudly saying things like “ooh, £150 for a t-shirt, what a bargain!” and “This rhinestone bracelet would make an adorable collar for Cockapoo!”

Step three – run!

Even the most well-thought-out heists will encounter road bumps at times. You may find that your foolproof disguise and natural stealth aren’t enough to deter the prying eyes of trained security staff. In which case, you may need to run. Run like your future depends on it. Because if anything’s going to make you less employable, it’s another black mark on your criminal record.

Billie Cooper

"Your daughter shows an aptitude for reading and writing, but can get wriggly during carpet time" was what Billie Cooper's year two teacher wrote on her report card back in 1997. In her 26-year existence, no combination of words have gotten closer to articulating the essence of Billie's soul.