Women

A-Z of Dressing for Success – Letter ‘C’

Totally You A-Z (c)

Colour

Cool & Warm Colours 

This is a big one! Colour can make a huge difference to the impression you create. It needs to be appropriate to your environment, but that doesn’t mean it needs to be boring.
Black and a very light colour including white is a very authoritative combination and can cause others to become defensive if not worn with care. However if you combine black with a more striking colour (if your skin tone allows this – it can overwhelm some people) it becomes interesting, whilst still being powerful.
A more approachable business colour is navy, especially when combined with a medium strength pastel. This encourages good communication.
Red is a great colour to draw attention and can look dynamic worn the the right way. If you have a strong natural personality, wear red in small quantities.
Take care with colours such as lime green, orange or yellow as they can be perceived as frivolous in the workplace. If you love these colours and they express your personality, consider adding them in small doses or in your accessories as you can remove these easily if you need to quickly change your look.

 

 

 

Confidence

ConfidenceKnowing your style and the colours that work for you can add to your personal confidence. If you know you look good you can forget about what you are wearing and concentrate on doing what you do best!

 

 

 

Comfort

verwirrte junge Frau

 

In the context of clothes which compliment who you are, this is important. However, don’t let comfort become sloppy as comfort over style can cause you to fall short when making a strong positive impact.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do you use colour in your wardrobe? How confident are you of your look? Using colour and style to boost your confidence really works!

A-Z of Dressing for Success – Letter B

Totally You A-Z (b)

Brand

 

Personal Branding on Multicolor Puzzle. In business having a personal brand, which helps you stand out from your competitors, ensures you are remembered. Does what you wear make sense with how you want your business to be seen? Don’t be memorable for looking like you don’t care!
You are your business and people buy from people, remember – make your appearance a key part of your conscious self-marketing.

 

 

 

Body Shape

Do you dress to suit your body shape? Do you know what shape you are?11dressmakers-dummy

It can truly make a difference to how your clothes look for both men and women. Wearing styles which may look great on a friend, but really don’t work for your physical shape can make you look, larger, smaller and often untidy and uncomfortable.
For women, it is about showing off your very best bits and playing down those areas you don’t like so much.

If you would like to understand your body shape, send me an email and I will forward you a FREE body shape analysis hand out.
For men, it helps to wear jackets and trousers that are the right length and cut for you. Whether you wear trousers with one, two or no waist pleats can improve your line.

Develop your own personal brand, using your own unique personality together with styles and colours which really show who you are and how you would like others to see you. I offer a variety of sessions which can help you find out what will be just right for you and help you Dress for Success.

Call now on 07742 445243

 

A – Z of Dressing for Success – Letter A

Totally You A-Z (a)

Appearance

What your Clients See - picture

It may not be fair, but it is absolutely true, there are no second chances to make a great first impression. The way you look can be the decider when it comes to moving up the career ladder, getting a new job or meeting a new client. It also counts when making a great social impression. What we wear really does matter – make it part of your conscious self-marketing!

 

Adapt

chameleon Pictures

Know your own style, wear it well and always adapt just enough to meet the expectations of your client, the culture of the company you work for or the social occasion you are attending – be a ‘Chameleon with Style’!

Accessories

For women, you can add jewellery, scarves, belts, bags etc. to really enhance an outfit. Accessories ensure you are able to wear the same outfit to the same place again and again and it will look different every time. They lift a less expensive outfit and add colour to a neutral outfit.
For men it is all about a good watch, a quality belt (belts should always be worn if you have belt loops!) cuff links etc.
For both men and women, always use a good quality pen and use a stylish folder or neat pad for writing notes! Avoid scraps of paper, throw away pens and worst of all – plastic carrier bags or tatty ruck sacks!

Aqua & Beige outfit               Tie, cufflinks and watches on the old wood background

Look out for the letter ‘B’ coming soon!

Style at 40, 50, 60 and beyond in 2014

54488_T1S6305 Another year, sales are on and there appears to be lots of bargains out there, but are they really bargains? If the colours and styles don’t work for you those great buys may stay in your wardrobe for the whole year never worn.

How do you feel about choosing styles that work both for your body shape and your age? You know you still feel 20 inside, but how do you show the world that you are still fabulous?

We can get stuck in a rut with how we dress, becoming used to a certain style, maybe it is very casual, because we spend a lot of time at home, or maybe having worked for a large corporate organisation for so long dark suits and a ‘professional’ image are now the norm.

 

How do you break out of the pattern? You don’t want to look like ‘mutton dressed as lamb’ but you do want a change.

Here is a starting point. Think about some of these areas.

  •  Take a little time to think about your true personality – how much does this shine through in what you wear?
  • If you could choose any style (if you were brave enough!) what would it be?
  • Maybe classic or dramatic or creative maybe a little quirky?
  • Who do you know that carries off this style really well, it maybe a celebrity or possibly someone you know. Take a look at what they wear, how could you adapt this look for your own personality and body shape?
  • What colours do you wear? Do you stick to the same set of colours all the time? Do you wear a lot of black – why is that? Is it about confidence or just an easy life?

 

Now time for a little action!

 

  • Go out shopping, take a friend who will be really honest with you and try on lots of clothes
  • Try things that you have never considered before
  • Remember that some things that don’t look great on the hanger can sometimes surprise you and look fabulous on! (this of course works the other way too!)
  • Try colours you haven’t worn before – look at your face when you try a different colour – does it make you look healthy and your eyes sparkle or does it quite frankly make you look ill??

 

Remember accessories, they can make a huge difference to your look

  • Try jewellery, scarves, belts, hats, with your outfit, have fun experimenting
  • Keep all your accessories in line with your body scale so as not to over whelm
  • Think about how you can express your personality through your accessories

 

It is always good to get professional advice, so if you would like to know more about what colours and styles will make you look fabulous for who you are NOW! Give me a call on 07742 445243 I would love to speak with you.

Top Business Women Dress with Confidence

Shoot photo cropDo you dress to represent who you really are or do you conform to the rules and blend in with the crowd?

I am not suggesting that it is always appropriate to dress in outrageous styles and colours. but so many of us do the complete opposite and get lost in the background. Is that OK for you or do you need to be seen to raise your profile?

Being successful in any sphere of life depends on our self esteem and confidence, it can be easy to run with the pack and try not to stand out, but what will that achieve? Yes it is more difficult to assert your personality and true values through your appearance, especially if you are not accustomed to being noticed, but it can make so much difference.

I work with many brilliant, intelligent and focused women who are successfully building their careers, however many of them have something else in common.  Talk to them about their skills, and their confidence is obvious, talk to them about themselves, the impact they personally make on others and their personal confidence and self esteem are much lower.

This doesn’t seem to cause them quite so much of a problem until reaching senior management, board level or  starting a business. It is then that there is a  need to be seen for who you are, not a copy or reflection of  perhaps a male counterpart or corporate environment. Standing out as a professional confident woman, who expresses her own unique personality, through communication and physical appearance, will make a huge positive impact on those around you and lead to greater success.

If you would like to make that positive impression here are 5 initial tips to help you think about how you can be uniquely you in your career or business.

1. Know your values – what you stand for and how you want to be seen and heard.

  • You can achieve this through working with a great coach, who will help you explore this in a new and objective way.
  • Consider your communication style and your body language.

2. Think about your work environment – what is expected – dress codes etc. How can you fit in where you need to and yet allow your personality to shine through? (What is your style personality?)

  • Jewellery, scarves, belts, handbags and shoes are all great ways to add personality
  • What about the style of your suit, dress, trousers – more formal clothing does not have to be boring! Colour and quirky touches of style can make so much difference.

3. What colours do you wear to work? What do these say about you?

  • Black can say authoritative or it could say boring – blending into the background. It depends how you wear it and what colurs you wear with it. Try navy as an alternative, it is a much better colour for communication.
  • Using colours which look good on you, those that work with your skin tone is important for your confidence and the impression you make on others.

4. Be confident in what you wear, know that it works for you.

  • Know the things to avoid – if a neckline feels too low, it probably is!
  • Choose styles which work well with your body shape, so you are not worrying about those areas of your body you don’t like so much.

5. ALWAYS – make sure you are well groomed!

  • Does your hairstyle work? Does it reflect your style, but not get in your way causing you to have to adjust it constantly? Never  scrape it back into a pony tail because you haven’t had time to wash it!
  • Are you nails well manicured? Nail polish will add that final finishing touch, but it is not for everyone
  • Do your clothes fit well? Not so tight that it causes  pulling, gaping buttons or crease lines to appear around the waist or tops of legs. Not so baggy that your clothes disguise your shape and you end up looking like you are lost somewhere inside.
  • Are you wearing makeup? A little will enhance your look – too much will detract. Lipstick if you wear it will complete the look.

Personal confidence and self esteem come from knowing you are great at what you do and begin certain that you can always create a strong and personable impact.

Dress for who you are and what you want to achieve and make the impact you want!

‘I thoroughly enjoyed working with Sandra, she understood my boundaries instinctively and worked within these. The results have been brilliant, and I have received a number of comments in a short space of time. I have already recommended Sandra and will continue to do so’.

Katie – Financial Director

Sandra Collins - Totally You Consulting. Call 07742 445243

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Back to work with confidence & style!

It is now many years ago for me and yet I can still remember that feeling in my stomach when I realised it was time for me to re-enter the job market after having been at home for a number of years with my children.

What could I possibly do now? I had lost all my work skills hadn’t I? On top of that, I looked and felt like a ‘Mum’ in my eyes, my wardrobe had been reduced to mainly jeans, casual skirts and tops – oh yes I did have a suit in there somewhere, but it was now about 5 years out of date and to be honest a little tight in certain places!

I could now look after children – reasonably well, but not sure I could compete in the work place. However, what I didn’t think about was all those skills I had had to learn being a mum and how they could quite easily be transferred to the work place.

Organisation – the logistics of getting children to school, on to clubs, juggling housework, cooking and being there for your other half, takes some organising!

Listening – as a mum being a great listener is something we all do and take for granted

Negotiating – well that is obviously a key skill – bedtime, eating dinner, getting homework done, and much more all take negotiation skills.

Mentoring and Coaching – finding the best way to teach, advise, and guide!

Creativity – thinking of new ways to get things done, fabulous craft work with the children, maybe you have even got involved in some interior design in your home.

These are just five skills off the top of my head that so many mums have cultivated and use daily without even thinking about it. With  at times a little adaption and maybe in some areas a bit more training these skills are great assets in the work place.

As for your wardrobe – a little colour & style advice, a trip to the shops (you don’t have to spend a fortune) and you are back on track! Have you seen my tips over the last few weeks? Here is a summary!

  • Find time to clear out your wardrobe – throw away things which are no longer working for you
  • Understand how you want to be seen – what is your style and body shape
  • Think about where you want to work – what clothes would work best?
  • If the dress code is business casual, think about buying some great basics, then mix and match, personalise with accessories
  • For a more formal environment – invest on one great suit, if possible with both a skirt and trousers, then you can buy slightly less expensive tops to vary the look. You can also add your personality to this look with great jewellery.
  • Remember, great grooming is essential – you can have the most amazing outfit, but if your hair is a mess, you have bitten down nails and no make up or if your clothes are creased, have marks on them or don’t fit well – all your efforts will be in vain!
  • So to have time to ensure you can go out the door looking fab – organise your time. Decide what you will be wearing the next morning – including shoes, jewellery and make up and have it all set out ready.
  • And I make no apologies for mentioning this again – make sure your wardrobe is orgainsed! Make sure that only the clothes you are currently using are in the cupboard and if possible arrange to reflect your lifestyle – if nothing else, put work outfits together for easy access!

If you would like some help with any of these areas, Book a session with me now – 07742 445243! You can do most of this yourself, but my clients tell me that it is so much easier – and more fun with some professional guidance!

 

Making an impression – the small stuff really does count!

Grooming isn’t about buying the most expensive toiletries, designer clothes and highly priced accessories, it is about taking the time to look good, because you value yourself and want to feel confident when you are out there talking to clients and suppliers. It is also about your clients being able to see that you have made an effort; this will lead them to believe that you will also take that same time and effort to provide them with great service.

If you have made an effort it will make you feel great and this will increase your energy and focus, helping you to deal with the challenges you face, not having to worry about how you look. This is why it is so important that the clothes you choose reflect the ‘real you’ so that you can feel comfortable both inside and out, whilst also making that positive impression on people you meet.

Choose an outfit that you are going to feel great in all day – relax and enjoy being ‘yourself’ – remember you are the successful, confident person you wish to be!

The small stuff really does count!

Tips about the small stuff:

1. Remember to wear a watch – it helps to ensure you are on time and also that you do not overrun.

2. How do your shoes look? Are they clean? Do they need a polish?

3. Are you clothes in good condition?

a. Are there any buttons missing?
b. Check the hem line to make sure it is not coming loose
c. Are there any marks – could they do with a wash or a dry clean?

4. Do your clothes fit well?

a. Do the buttons pull apart when you sit?
b.  Do your clothes crease because they are too tight?
c. Are they too big? Pulled in with a belt to make them fit?

5. Ladies – have you added some make-up? This shows effort and completes the picture, it does not have to be heavy, just a touch will make an impact.

6 Consider your nails – having them manicured and polished is great – we forget how much we use our hands and how much they are on show! However at minimum, for both men and ladies make sure they are clean and well kept!

7. How clean is you hair and is it in an easy to manage style? Gentlemen, when did you last have a haircut? If you have a beard or other facial hair, is it neatly trimmed?

8. What accessories are you wearing? Do these enhance or detract from the image you want to create?

9. If you have to travel to a meeting remember:

a. Take a comb or brush – windy or rainy days cause havoc with the hair!
b. Remember your umbrella – drowned rat image is not so good!
c. If it is very warm weather, think about taking a spare shirt/top and some deodorant.
d. Choose good brief case or bag for your papers
e. Wear clothes that don’t crease!
f. Ladies – wear a comfortable pair of shoes and take the heels with you.
g. Take a cloth or have a tissue available to wipe over your shoes if necessary.

Get the small stuff right and you can relax, knowing that the effort you have made really makes a difference!

Then if you want to learn more about what colours and style work uniquely well for you – give me a call or ask for a voucher  as a gift so that you can have a fabulous personal session!

Call 07742 445243!

 

 

 

 

How do I dress appropriately for my age?

It is always a dilemma – how do you make sure you are dressing in a way that compliments your age? For me it is not a question of what clothes are right for what age group, it is much more about the styles and colours which work with, your body shape, your skin tone, your personality and your environment. It is not about fashion it’s about what works for you and makes you look fabulous!

 

 Here are a few tips which may help:

 

  • Forget about the size label, make sure that your clothes fit well – no gaping buttons, over tight tops, trousers with pockets which poke out as they are too tight on the hips etc.
  • Think about your body shape – does the material work with your shape?  Softer material which flows with your curves.  More structured fabric which compliments your more angular figure
  • Ensure the length of your dress/shirt works for you – hemline finishing at a narrower part of your leg, either just above or just below the knee
  • Choose colours which flatter. Remember that as your hair colour changes, some of the stronger shades could become over powering (This does not mean wearing only pastels as they may well wash you out) just go a shade or two lighter.
  • If you like to be in tune with fashion, add this through your accessories as they are easily changed to keep up with the trends. Accessories are the magic touch which transform an outfit!

 Something to think about – if a person saw you first from behind, would what you are wearing give them a clear impression of what to expect when meeting you face to face? Clothes which compliment your appearance and make an amazing first and lasting impression!

 

 If you would like some help to build a wardrobe full of outfits which boost your confidence and speak of who you are and how you want to be seen take a look at my Colour Analysis, Colour & Style Sessions or Wardrobe & Personal Shopping Sessions. Alternatively give me a call on 07742 445243 to see what might work for you!

How Do I Find My Style?

 

  • Style is not about clothes alone
  • Fashion can be bought – style cannot
  • We are not always born with a sense of style – but it can be learned
  • Style is consistent – but not boring

 

 Style  is such a personal thing, it’s about reflecting the real you at your very best! How do you find that elusive personal style? Here are a few ideas:

 

 Think about your personality, are you:

  • Artistic – love to be creative/different/carefree
  • Dramatic – love statement looks/strong contrasts/chic
  • Feminine – appreciate softer shapes/lady-like/graceful
  • Classic – enjoy a more formal /elegant/composed/timeless look
  • Natural – seek comfort and a more casual/sporty style.

You may be just one of these styles or more often a combination of 2 or more.

Do you lean towards a certain style out of habit 

  • May be because of a very corporate background or a recent need to take a more casual approach?
  • Are you confident that your current look is the real you?
  • Test this out, how do you really feel – how would you love to look given the opportunity and perhaps the courage?

Think about your lifestyle

  • What styles would give you confidence at work?
  • Would a different style work better in your leisure time?
  • How can you tie in the two different styles to support your personality?

Create your own style vision board

  • Take a canvas or a large sheet of paper, then look through magazines and pictures.
  • Think about the above 3 points and select pictures that represent your current and aspirational style.
  • Remember to consider your body shape when choosing

Now you know more about your style personality

  • Pull all you have learned about yourself together
  • Look through your wardrobe and see what works with your style
  • Invest in a few new items to bring your style to life
  • Remember that accessories are the magic which transforms and outfit!

 

 

 ‘Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak.’        Rachel Zoe

 

 ‘Style is more character than clothes, more attitude than affluence. It’s you making visible your inner self.  So forget what you learned about appearance not counting; you can no longer afford to be without style.’

 

By Hara Estroff Marano, published on September 01, 2008 – last reviewed on June 06, 2012

 

 

If you would more information or help on how to develop your personal style call me on 07742 445243 or take a look at Colour Analysis, Style Definition and Wardrobe & Personal Shopping. Why not ask a loved one to buy you a voucher for a one to one session for your birthday? 

Colour is Powerful!

Colour can help you look healthier, younger, more approachable, more assertive, creative or professional; it can make your skin glow and your eyes sparkle, if you know how!

Colour can also make you look drained, showing up the lines and shadows on your face. It can give out the wrong messages psychologically – disguising your creative personality or portraying a strong authoritative impression (when you don’t intend it to) triggering a defensive response from those you wish to influence.

So how can you ensure colour works positively for you? Two ways:

  1.  Know what colours work with your skin tone, so that you can look and feel great.
  2. Understand just a little about the psychological impact colours have on those you wish to communicate with.

Colours & Skin Tone

Wearing colours that work well with your skin tone can make a significant difference to your appearance; building your confidence and making you feel great! So finding out what works best for you is a fun and very useful thing to invest in.  You can then choose clothes and accessories that really work for you!

Determining Skin Tone

 This can be quite tricky and professional help is a good way to ensure you have got it right; however here are a few general tips:

 

Cool Skin Tone

If you have a cool skin tone you will see:

  •  Pinkish or rosy undertones to the skin
  • Olive or black skin with a blue undertone
  • Brown/hazel/blue or green eyes
  • Softer greys or softer less determined eye colour
  • Black, dark brown, platinum blonde, light or mid brown, blue grey natural hair colour
  • Yellow based colours will give a sallow appearance to the face
  • The colour silver will brighten the face

Notable examples are: Sarah Jessica Parker, Sandra Bullock, Courtney Cox, and Jennifer Aniston.

So we know that the above cool colours work for our cool skin tone and that when combined in our accessories and jewellery with clear or antique silver, they will look amazing.

    

Warm Skin Tone

If you have a warm skin tone you will see:

  • Yellow based ivory, peach or golden undertones to the skin
  • Black skin with yellow undertones
  • Bright green, turquoise blue or golden brown eyes
  • Red, strawberry blonde, brown with reddish tint, chestnut, golden brown, natural hair colour
  • Blue based colours will drain the face
  • The colour gold will brighten the face

Notable examples are: Gwyneth Paltrow, Sarah Ferguson, and Nicole Kidman

The great warm colours above will work for those with a yellow undertone to your skin and your accessories will include jewellery with clear or antique gold.

 

Colour Psychology

 The final piece to the puzzle is the possible psychological impact the colours we are wearing are having on those we wish to communicate with.

Here is a little taster of the messages colour can give:

Approachable – soft or warm colours like pastel pinks, pastel blue, coral, tan or terracotta

Assertive – Strong contrasts – black or navy with bright reds or purples – Take care here!

Authoritative – Dark tones with very light tones (uniforms)

Creative – Warm/bright colours worn in unusual or unexpected colour combinations

Sensitive – Purple/violet/lavender –can be used to soften a hard look

So if you know what colour works for you and the impact it has on others, how confident will that make you feel and how successful could that make you both in business and in your social interaction?

 

If you want to know more about how to discover what colours can really work for you, give me or call on 07742 445243 or email me at Totallyyou@live.co.uk for a free no obligations initial consultation.

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