Trainee says no more than half an inch of cleavage is acceptable at work (wiki commons)

A trainee at a city law firm wrote a blog warning new recruits about what not to wear to the firm's London offices.

The unidentified trainee, at Berwin Leighton Paisner, wrote the dress code that appeared for a short while on the firm's website before being removed.

It said red bras, trashy heels and visible panty lines (VPL) were not acceptable. "Nothing ruins an outfit like bumpy lace showing through your top or bulges on your bottom," it said.

The blog suggested women invest in a "neutral T-shirt bras and non-VPL knickers", while dresses should be no more than "one Bic biro's length" above the knee nor should they show more than "half an inch of cleavage".

"You have one day, or at the very most two weeks, to make an impression and you don't want that impression to be 'does he understand how to use an iron?' or 'nice to know she likes red bras'.

"You don't have to be devoid of personality but, as with all things in life, you have to know what the rules are before you break them."

It said women were advised to wear black three-piece suits with nude patent shoes that make the wearer's legs look "miles long". However, it warned against "trashy" heels, which should be saved for nights out.

Chelmsford estate agent

The blog author, whose gender is also unknown, said there is "no excuse" for wearing trainers for the walk to work.

Men were told to avoid black suits, skinny ties and coloured shirts with white colours: "You are not an estate agent from Chelmsford," it said.

Bosses at the firm swiftly took the blog post down, saying it was "inappropriate" and had been created by a junior member of staff: "The blog was created by one of our trainees," a spokesman said.

"We do encourage our trainees to blog and they still can. But we did take this one down."

Some lawyers reading the blog said it should have been left up as it offered good advice.

Others, however, disagreed: "Classic inherent elitist snobbery we've come to expect from these types of firms. If the trainees are good enough to get in, they're smart enough to know what to wear. How patronising."