Let Them Talk About You...
and Not Your Clothes
Coco Chanel once said: “Dress shabbily and they remember the dress. Dress impeccably and they remember the woman”
Why do women athletes present themselves with make up knowing they will be sweaty in a few minutes? Why do middle-aged women dress as if they were going to the beach when actually they are at a high end mall on a Thursday morning?
People noticing and talking about your clothes happens more often than you might realize. What someone’s wearing can be a stumbling block for clear communication. If something about your outfit is “off” or confusing, it may send the message that you appear unapproachable or out of touch with your own identity. On the other hand, when clothes fit, flatter, and express your personal style, people are drawn in and want to know more about you.
Here are some ways that clothes can be a distraction.
1. Bad fit
If the sleeves on your jacket or blouse are way too long for you or the pant legs on your slacks are dragging on the floor, you look swallowed up by your clothes. Our view of you is obstructed.
If pants, skirts or tops are too binding around your middle, you look uncomfortable. Your audience sees the misfit and feels uncomfortable for you. This isn’t how you want people thinking about you.
It’s hard to assess fit by yourself. Someone with a professional eye and experience with current fashion can make these assessments for you.
2. Age inappropriate dressing
People can make this mistake at any age. A woman moves into her 30s and is still dressing like a college student. The downside is that she isn’t seen for the woman she’s blossomed into. A sixty-year-old tries to capture a memory of her youth by wearing trendy clothes from the junior department. She could end up looking like a character and not a genuine person. In both of these examples the clothes aren’t appropriate to where these individuals are in life.
When you leave one chapter of your life and enter another your wardrobe needs to follow and support your transition. Having a wardrobe coach can be immeasurably helpful at times like these.
3. Wearing unflattering colors
Coco Chanel also said: "The best color in the world is the one that looks good on you."
When you wear clothing in colors that are too strong for your complexion, hair and eyes, they are the attention-getters, not you. Bright or neon colors can seem to enter a room before you do. All anyone can see is the color and you go missing.
Clothes in muted or faded colors can be gorgeous on some people. But if you’re not someone who lights up a room wearing dove gray or putty, these colors could make you look sickly or invisible. In this case, it’s impossible to exude presence or power. On the other hand, too many colors worn at once can make someone think you’re wearing a costume not an outfit. Your clothes create a spectacle rather than a connection.
Flattering colors aren’t hard to find. A color expert can clear up any confusion you might have and make finding “your” colors a joy.
4. Expired style
When people have neglected themselves for a period of time, it shows. Personal style requires updating to avoid getting lost in a decade. What you wear offers clues about you. If all your clues point to 1995, the subliminal message you’re sending is that you’re out of date with your self, and possibly with business life and other relationships.
It can seem like it would take a lot of time, effort and money to update your style and present yourself in the most flattering way but in the right hands, you could be looking like your best self in the next week. You deserve to enjoy all the benefits that come from owning your current personal style.
When someone’s outfit isn’t making sense, it sends a warning to others to be on high alert. Don’t let this happen to you. With some education and a few adjustments to your wardrobe you can be in clothes that fit, flatter and suit you best. And even better, it’ll all look effortless on your part.
I believe that any day is a good day to start focusing on yourself, creating new habits that will lead to self-appreciation and a good self-image. I’d love to help you make it happen. Call me and we’ll set up a review session and get started.