The Fashion Files: Werkin’ It in the Workplace

I recently sat down with Joymarie and Courtney, the women behind Joblogues, and Christina of Just Missed the Runway to discuss fashion and style in the workplace. Now, I may be cheating a little bit because I’ve worked in the creative space for a number of years and most of the time, anything goes. However, some of those creative jobs were in super corporate environments and I know just how difficult it can be to navigate that space when it comes to fashion. Fashion and style are ever-changing; add cultural norms/expectations in the mix, and getting dressed in the morning can be stressful… but don’t worry, Christina and I have you covered!

You can take a listen to the podcast here, but I also wanted to provide you with a few takeaways. Whether you’re interviewing or starting a new job, the tips below can definitely give you that extra boost to help you elevate your work wardrobe.

Know Your Style

Sometimes what you like and what you wear are two different things. What I mean by this is that most of the time, people don’t really know what their style is. They’ll see something in a magazine or a store, and will buy it just because it’s cute but it doesn’t fit their personality or aesthetic AT ALL.

It can take a number of years to develop your personal style (I actually know alllllll about that from personal experience and maybe I’ll share that story one day!) but here is a quick starter exercise you can take to help you get on the right path:

Make a mood board. Fire up Pinterest and get to pinning! (Check out the “Inspiration” section for an example of my style.) Or do things the old fashion way and flip through magazines, with your scissors and glue stick in hand. Filling up your mood board with images that you love and that inspire you will help you get in touch with your true self; you will truly tap into your deep desires! Once you have your mood board completed, it’s time to take to your closet to see if your desires match up with your current wardrobe… and more importantly, if you’re satisfied with your current wardrobe. If there’s an overlap where the objects on your board correspond with what’s in your closet and you’re satisfied, good job! You’re in touch with your style. If there’s a severe discrepancy or you feel like you’re wardrobe is not where it could be, then there’s some work that needs to be done, which brings me to the next tip…

 

Love It or Leave It!

This one is pretty simple… that dress that you bought a million years ago that you loved in the store, but you brought it home and you didn’t really love it so much anymore but has now been sitting in your closet with the tags still on? Toss it! You want your closet to only be full of things you really love.

Plain and simple: if an item still has the tags on, meaning it’s never been worn, and a lot of time has passed since you purchased it? Get rid of it! It’s the next season (let’s say it’s autumn) and you went the whole summer without wearing that fuchsia summer dress? That can be put in the maybe pile. (The next exercise will help you determine whether or not it’s a keeper.)

Now that you have a somewhat clear closet, it’s time to move on to the next tip. Actually, this works even if you’re satisfied with your wardrobe… and I guarantee this activity is going to be tons of fun!

 

Play Dress Up

I didn’t realize that I did this until Christina brought it up during the podcast! When I’m bored, and just hanging out around the house or maybe after I’ve purchased a few new pieces, I’ll go over to my closet and play dress up. That’s right… dress up is not just for kids anymore!

The purpose of this is to:

  1. See how the silhouette of the clothes looks on my body. If you’ve gained or lost weight, things just fit differently.
  2. Create new clothing combinations, thus expanding your wardrobe options. You will also be able to get dressed in a jiffy now that you know what pieces pair well.

If you have a piece you’re on the fence about, trying on your clothes will help you see if there’s anything else in your closet you can pair it with. I absolutely love shopping, but I also like saving money and being creative. When you play dress up and “shop in your own closet”, you’re able to come up with fun new combinations without running out to the mall to pick up something new.

There are tons more great tips and gems in the podcast, so be sure to take a listen.

And remember: I’m here to help you. Drop me a line and let’s work together to come up with a style game plan!

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"If you're not comfortable in your own skin, you won't be comfortable in your own clothes." Iris Apfel

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