4 Instances When What You Wear Matters
What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today, when human contacts are so quick. Fashion is instant language.
~ Miuccia Prada
In our increasingly casual world, the power of dress is often overlooked. As human beings, we form impressions based upon what we see — it’s in our nature. That means that others are regularly making judgments about who you are, based on what you’re wearing. Upon first meeting, it’s all a person has to go on until a conversation ensues.
The goals for your own first impression are personal and unique. What you’re aiming for in your life likely looks very different from what I’m hoping to achieve. A new career,… a new love,… a new home…. all have a very specific set of parameters and relationship dynamics that support their achievement, and the way you show up visually can make a difference. Here are 4 circumstances where your clothing can impact your outcome:
If your employer were scanning the team for the member who stands out as competent to lead the project of your company’s most important client, would their eyes rest upon you with a “Yes, she’s the one”?
Examine your regular work-day outfits. Are they well coordinated and currently styled? Great. (I’m assuming a “yes,” there.) Next level: Assure they are tailored to fit your body in such a way they appear that they were made just for you. Impeccable fit demonstrates you’re one to cross all your t’s and dot all your i’s. If you do so in appearance, it suggests to others you’d do the same in your work practices, too.
Tip: Ask a friend whose style you admire who their tailor is and make a bee-line to that tailor with your new purchases. They very well could become your new BFF, saving many outfits from the not-good-enough stack.
You’re invited to your bestie’s “girls’ day weekend” to a fun city-touring and spa trip. Do you know what to pack?
Many women focus on appropriate professional clothing for their careers, and have a collection of jeans and hoodies for their kids’ weekend soccer games. Ask them to assemble a smart-casual outfit and it’s like suggesting they jump through a hoop of fire.
Take stock of your closet. If there’s a gap in the zone of what-to-wear-for-casual-fun, while still looking pulled together, it’s time to shop for some smart-casual ensembles. Choose colors that flatter your features, and shapes that suit your body. Make it your shopping goal to procure 3-4, 3-piece outfits in hues and patterns that mix and match with one another. The result will have potential for 10 or more variations — more than enough to fill your weekend bag with tour-worthy options, and have combinations leftover for the next trip.
Tip: Your “third piece” in the outfit can be a cardigan you’d wear with a silk blouse and skinny jeans; a cape or shawl/wrap; or a statement-making necklace or scarf. These all can make an outfit complete.
You’re shopping for a new car and find yourself overlooked when the sales agent greets another buyer that entered the showroom after you did. When ignored in this way, it’s often the result of a snap judgment a salesperson makes about your seriousness or ability to buy. No matter how inaccurate, it can feel downright invalidating.
Get the service you deserve with a look of confidence and worthiness. (Yes, but of course you’re in a position to walk away from a less-than ideal purchase arrangement.) Choose clothing colors that exude self assurance, and styles that suggest prosperity. As with your look in the workplace, good fit goes a long way in communicating success.
Tip: Wearing a structured jacket lends an air of authority, and projects competence in decision making. Navy blue has long-been seen as a color of wisdom, intelligence, and expertise.
You’ve decided you’re ready for Mr./Ms. Right to enter your life. Not leaving any stone unturned, you’re setting up an online dating profile and putting yourself out into the world with organized activities where you’ll meet others, potentially your ideal mate.
Take the quality of the relationship you desire into account when planning what to wear to an event or in a photo. If a long-lasting partnership is in your vision, avoid racy or suggestive clothing, and instead, aim for a look that is genuine and approachable. Want quick feedback? Check this site to find out what others “get” from your photo: PhotoFeeler.
Tip: Opt against attire that shows cleavage or otherwise suggests swift advances to intimacy if slow and steady is your game. Wear colors that bring your own features to life. They will support you in looking your most vibrant, youthful, and energized self. If you’re not well versed in your personally-flattering colors, a coral or apricot with depth (not pastel) projects femininity and emotional availability.
Every setting has its demands. Choose your look with intention and you’ll communicate your stance clearly at the onset. With a net worth of $2.4 billion, Miuccia Prada, must know something about fashion as “instant language.”
What have been your experiences? Have a comment? Question? Let me know your thoughts in the comment box below. I read them all. (You just might be the inspiration for my next blog post.)
Want to learn more? Work with me.
Patty Buccellato is an image coach and founder of Refined Images. She brings extensive knowledge and expertise to her work with men and women individually, as well as with corporate employee groups.
Patty established Refined Images in 1994, and while her studio is based in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, you’ll find her serving clients throughout North America in their homes, offices — and, yes, even in shopping malls! To get your FREE copy of Patty’s “How to Shop Like a Stylist,” visit www.RefinedImages.net or contact Patty.
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