Image is a powerful communication tool, creating an impression of your personality within seconds of a first meeting. Fashioning a polished style that allows you to look put together and tells the story of who you are can be life changing.
Unfortunately, most of us were never taught how to do this.
It’s a process that involves learning new techniques. As we practice these techniques, like anything else, over time it becomes second nature.
The single easiest thing you can do to change your style is to add color to your wardrobe. My clients tell me just making this one change can have significant results. I have been working with one client, Dorri C. Scott, for just over a year. She already had a beautiful style that she credits to her life experience as a church-goer. Dorri has a larger-than-life personality and therefore felt it was appropriate to downplay the vibrancy in her wardrobe. She wore a lot of neutrals and mostly black. I shared with her that this approach doesn’t usually work.
Unconsciously, we expect people to mirror on the outside who they are on the inside. If you are in vibrant colors, we expect a vibrant personality. If you are in soft, muted colors, we expect a soft muted personality. Unfortunately, if you wear dull, neutral colors we expect you to be dull. If you are NOT dull, as in Dorri’s case, it is psychologically jarring to see you in nondescript clothes. Today, Dorri wears vibrant colors, she looks amazing and is received as the successful, vibrant and powerful woman she is.
Dorri knows what colors to wear because I gave her a professional color analysis and she has a great eye. She mixes and matches colors in interesting ways. Popping a cobalt blue dress with red shoes and a red patterned shawl for example.
- Dorri is not alone. I find most of my clients have closets that are void of color. What about you? Take a look next time you’re in your closet. I recommend organizing your closet by color. Put all your jackets together, hung from lightest to darkest with similar colors together. Do the same with your pants, tops and dresses, etc. You will quickly be able to see what you have. Do you have lots and lots of black and gray? If so, that is common and a sign that it is time to add some color.
- Of course, your personality is only one factor. You also want to consider your skin tone. Are you warm (with yellow undertones), or cool (with pink or blue undertones), what color is your hair, your eyes, and your skin? Do you have hair, skin, and eyes that are similar in tone or do you have dark hair and light skin; thus a higher natural contrast. All of these things impact the best colors for you. Learning about yourself in this way helps you make smart choices about the colors you should wear in clothes, eyewear and jewelry.
- Next, get creative with color combinations. Use the color wheel as a tool like an artist. At a basic level, colors that are adjacent on the wheel (blue and green for example) work well together, as do colors that are across the wheel like blue and orange.