How many times you have left your home feeling horrible about the way you looked and shrugged it off thinking, it doesn’t matter, that nobody will notice anyway? Usually the times that we want to hide out because we know we look bad and this is often when we get noticed the most. We assume that if we don’t look great we will just blend in to the background but the truth is quite the opposite.
No, we don’t dress for other people’s approval but we do need to be responsible for what we put on our bodies and the message that it sends. Think about telling your own story through your wardrobe by being on purpose with what you choose to wear. Imagine your wardrobe is a walking billboard that tells on you, what would you want it to say? Here are some points to consider:
If your current wardrobe could talk what would it say?
Your clothing may not be able to speak in the sense that it has an audible voice, but your clothing certainly says something and if it could talk what do you imagine it would say? The next time you walk out the door imagine that your wardrobe is telling on you and ask yourself if you like what it is saying or not. The best way to know if you like it or not is to take notice of your body language, how you feel in what you are wearing and if you would be happy to run into anyone who you haven’t seen in a while.
Do you even know what you want it to say?
The first thing to ask yourself is if you even know what you want your clothing to say. I always ask people to come up with at least three quick buzzwords to describe what they want their style to communicate; fun, sophisticated and powerful; down to earth, assured and confident. Whatever it is, it is yours to create and considering that your clothing is a better communicator of these goals than the words that come out of your mouth, doesn’t it make sense to see if what you want you want to say and your actual wardrobe is aligned?
How do you make your wardrobe speak?
You really are the one who has to make your wardrobe say what you want it to. Clothing doesn’t just express itself without total input from you. So how do you do get your wardrobe to speak well for you? Well to start, get in that closet and start getting honest. You have those buzzwords, so when you are doing a closet purge ask yourself if the clothing you have in there is speaking for you positively. You may be surprised to see that it is farther off the mark than you imagined and it may be the missing component as to why you feel like you have to work harder to be perceived as you would like to be.
Some key tips to love the way you look
The first key tip is the 3F’s, function, fit and fashion.
- Function: Function comes first because everything in your wardrobe must serve a functional purpose in your wardrobe. If it is of no use to you then it has no business being in your wardrobe in the first place.
- Fit: I can’t stress fit enough. The wrong fit can make a perfectly good outfit look schleppy and dumpy. I have seen it so many times for example, a woman in a perfectly good suit that is too big with sleeves too long in need of a hem on their pants. Additionally, the proper fit of clothing can make you look slimmer, taller and more balanced physically. So please don’t pass up the use of a good tailor or settling for garments at the store that don’t flatter the fit of your body as well as they could. It may get frustrating to find clothing that fits your body but please don’t settle because it will only hurt you in the end.
- Fashion: Lastly, focus on fashion and choosing fashionable styles that work for you. Don’t buy something because you think you have to just to be considered stylish that you know you won’t wear or won’t feel good wearing.
When it comes to buying clothing, it all boils down to passion. A passionless wardrobe speaks loud and clear to others. When wearing clothing that you don’t feel connected to or that don’t resonate with who you are it shows.
Passion is personal; it isn’t something that can’t be decided for you by a fashion magazine or even someone like myself. When I work with a client I don’t force them into anything that doesn’t make them feel good and my job purely is to help a woman achieve with her wardrobe that which she has a hard time achieving on her own. Resources like magazines, fashion experts and the like are simply tools that make you aware and help you figure out what gets you jazzed. Only you know for certain if something makes you feel passionate or not. Additionally, having a passionate wardrobe has nothing to do with being trendy, having the right bag or walking around in the right shoe. Remember the fashion icons, their choices were based on passion not being trendy.
Keep it simple
Another thing that you don’t want your wardrobe to do is speak over you. Nothing is worse than the person who drowns herself in a fashion statement only to leave the world wondering where the woman is who is wearing the clothing. You want to be memorable not your clothing. Your clothing should enhance who you are on the inside and to do this is by creating a subtle marriage between who you are on the outside with who you are on the inside.
Think on a whole
One of the biggest mistakes I see a woman make when she gets dressed is that she thinks in a compartmentalized vs. thinking about the bigger picture on a whole. What commonly happens when a woman dresses in a compartmentalized way is that she doesn’t look pulled together and instead just has on key pieces that aren’t supporting each other. I clearly remember seeing a woman who was wearing a lovely jacket that didn’t look as great as it could because all the other pieces didn’t support it. The blouse underneath was ill fitting and completely wrong for the jacket, her shoes had no business being a part of the outfit and her skirt was ill proportioned to the jacket. On their own, each piece was a great but together they all worked against one another. The next time you get dressed think on a whole make sure that each piece works with the others that you put on your body. If you don’t do the whole outfit gets muddied and distracting.
Always remember that when you get dressed you have an opportunity to express yourself, that like it or not your clothing tells a story and the choice is ultimately yours as to whether or not you want to be the author.