The modern professional woman is new and exciting and breaking ground that has never been attempted before. She is looking for balance between her work life, her home life and her social life. She is choosing to have her family later and she is not afraid to go toe to toe with the boys in the office.
From the new graduates studying right now, who have only ever known the digital age to Gail Kelly of Westpac who has shown women that the glass ceiling no longer exists.
What are three outfits she can base her wardrobe off?
She needs her power suit –not the red suit of the ‘80’s but a sleek jacket and skirt combination in black or navy pin stripe. Tailored to fit. Worn with a crisp shirt –the fabric may have a masculine feel to it but the styling will be distinctly feminine. Worn with hosiery and elegant dark heels.
Second she needs her trouser suit, in charcoal. This she can wear to in house meetings, negotiations and days when the unexpected may occur. With the trousers tapered she can team this suit with heels or flats depending on her mood and her day. It also allows her to dress it up very quickly should an important client appear.
Lastly she needs an outfit that a bit more fun. When she is starting her career I would recommend that she starts with a combination as pictured that has 2 jackets and 4-5 bottoms that can mix and match with the jackets. Ideally I’d recommend a mix of skirts and trousers. Keeping pattern to a minimum will give her more flexibility and mixing and matching her patterns and outfits.
What are the best colours a woman should base her professional wardrobe off?
The ideal colours worn by a businesswoman in her professional wardrobe needs to suit both her position and her colouring. If she’s in the financial sector or law she will want to wear dark serious colours maybe with the inclusion of a pop of camel, red and brighter blues and greens like teal and Aqua. If she’s in the professional services industry she may choose more colour in her wardrobe, keeping in mind that the more colour the more flamboyant and creative she will look. My personal favourites are navy, pinstriped and charcoal to form the core of any professional women’s wardrobe.
Ideally her clothing needs to work with her colouring. If she has fair hair, fair skin and fair eyes she needs to avoid black entirely. As her colour deepens so can her choice in colours and contrast.
What accessories (if any) should she include in her wardrobe?
It is the accessories that define her personality and allow the true person to shine through in even the most professional and corporate of office. Depending on her personality will depend upon the level of accessories that she purchases or has on hand.
Depending on the position she will need a work satchel. To add interest to the daily wardrobe I would highly recommend different belts, simple jewellery as in earrings necklaces and bracelets and for the right person a collection of scarves. However I would never recommend a scarf to a woman who doesn’t wear them and doesn’t like them.
Never overlook the impact an accessory can have on creating personality and originality any outfits working or otherwise
What kinds of shoes are appropriate?
A woman needs to remember when she’s at work that whilst she may want look fashionable she needs to still be comfortable. A closed toe shoe is a must. The elegance that a woman can convey in a closed toe shoe is far superior to anything that sandal or a peep toe can bring to our overall outfits. Anything from a low 1 cm heel up to 8 cm heel will work for a professional woman. Ballet flats could give you the impression that you have not yet grown up whilst towering stiletto heels makes dude a higher degree of sexuality which can be deterring to your professional Image.
What should she keep in mind when doing hair and make up?
She wants a hairstyle that will look great everyday. Something she can manage those mornings when she slept in and that can manage take her from the office to an evening out if the need arises.
You may needs to appear natural. Clean fresh appearance is ideal. I highly recommend Mascara and lipstick every day. If she is a woman with beautiful fresh skin good foundation may not be necessary. It is always important to take in the office environment someone is working in is what might look healthy and fresh at home cannot quite washed out in a superficially lit environment.
What should the modern professional woman avoid when dressing?
She needs to remember where she’s going. She needs to avoid the ‘I just rolled out of bed look’, or the ‘I’m ready to rock’n’ roll’ – ‘I’m out to a party tonight’. She also needs to keep in mind that while some television shows may portray characters in towering stilettos and thigh high skirts, many employers would not be pleased. The main complaints I hear from clients is that women are not dressing professionally at work. They are not taking the time to invest in their professional wardrobe and whilst they may think they look good, or worse still think that nobody notices or even cares, they’re not reflecting the company brand whom they work. So in this case I would say avoid complacency.
If you want help dressing for your image, to get the job you want, the promotion you are after, or that special someone in your life, Call Clare now to book some time with her.
Never overlook the fact that while your personality and knowledge will get you places: it is the way you look which can open the first door.
The way you looks accounts for 55% of a first impression and if that image is not great, guess what, you are fighting an uphill battle. Not an impossible battle, but one which could be avoided, by proper preparation and attention to the way you look to the people you are doing business with.
Ensure that your image is attracting the people that you are after.
Clothing personalities tell more about you than you might imagine. Your clothes can speak louder than words and can give an insight into your hidden personality through the use of fabric, colour, trim and accessories. Ensure that you are always wearing the correct clothing that displays who you truly are.
The Classic Personality is ordered, capable, has an attention to detail and is stable. These people are great in traditional finance and corporate positions.
The Dramatic Personality loves living in the spotlight. They are gregarious, will not shy away from the spotlight, are a great ambassador and a motivator.
The Natural Personality does not give a toss about fashion. They are more interested in more intellectual matters or functional matters. They are doers, not sayers generally. These people are great in support roles, working as administrators and often with their hands.
The Rebellious Personality will be apparent by their love of studs, leather and a tattoo or two, hidden or not. They are suited to creative industries, music or nightlife.
The Elegant Personality is like the Classic only less rigid and more community minded. These women know who they are and are often quite forthright in their approach.
The Romantic Personality is very womanly, gracious and pretty. She is suited to beauty and spa industries, fashion and support roles.
Finally the Creative Personality will dance to her own tune. She will never conform to style, deisgn or trends. Her ideas and outlook on life are as original as her clothing style. Do not box this lady in.
To understand more about your clothing style or to have Clare come to your workplace and run her Personality workshop contact her through her website or at email@example.com
Much has been said about our Personality and how it affects not only how other see us but how we see ourselves. Unfortunately, we live in a mostly stereotypical, superficial society that is motivated by what we see more than what we know.
Since the early days of personality profiling people have been placed into boxes. These have been referred to as Ezekiel’s four living creatures, Hippocrates moods, Aristotle’s styles, Galen’s four temperaments, MYERS BRIGGS and then Kiersey’s four temperaments. To name just a few. None however have connected the choices we make in our clothing and the affect it can have on ourselves and our audience.
No longer happy to just profile clients as degrees of introversion over extroversion you need to discover for yourself how your clothing style will be motivating or demotivating to others.
When I am working in groups, I like to bring the clothing styles down into 5 basic groups. They are, the Classics, Creatives, Dramatics, Natural and Romantics. Depending on which os the 5 styles you are it will have an impact on those around you and how people perceive your personality.
I have outlined here very briefly how the 5 personalities are viewed professionally and the fields they can excel in.
Dramatics find it easy to standout thereby giving them a greater profile when it comes to promotion in the corporate or presence based markets. This can be a detractor when they are looking to working within a team.
The Classics are the ideal Corporate player with your timeless style and elegance. For this person the creative world of Art and Design can be a challenge as they are perceived rightly or wrongly to be too strict.
The Naturals/Relaxed are great in the Not For Profit industries. They are often seen in the health services and the obvious sporting and agricultural fields. A natural can often be overlooked in the corporate field.
The Romantic will also be found in the Spa industries, suited to food services – think cup cakes, and everywhere where feminine glamour is expected. The male Romantics are in the arts. These wonderful people love to love life and spend their time surrounded by beauty. With this in mind, industries which are more cut throat can appear to be out of their reach.
Finally the Creatives do things their own way. They can be overlooked in the corporate market if they are expected that they should toe the line. Their eccentricities do however make them memorable.
Take the time to learn how your style can be influencing those around you. Ensure it is correct for the industry that you are in. Finally make sure that how what you see in the mirror is the same as others see in you. All too often I have seen clients have an inaccurate perception of what style they are dressing in which can result in less than satisfactory feedback from their employer or from their own perception of what successes you should attain.
Don’t let your opportunities for success be denied. Learn how you can ensure that you have the opportunity to motivate everyone around you to see you for your accomplishments and your best at all times.