Although your choice of clothing might seem like a small factor in the larger scheme of your professional life, making a winning impression with your wardrobe is more important than you think. When we dress up it makes us feel good, and when we feel good, we are more confident and perform better.
Or, as Betty Harragan, the author of “Games Mother Never Taught You” tells us “If your clothes don’t convey the message that you are competent, able, ambitious, self-confident, reliable and authoritative, nothing you say or do will overcome the negative signals emanating from your apparel.”
If you are even the slightest bit ambitious, you’ll want your wardrobe to work positively in your favour and make you look impeccable. You’ve probably heard this piece of advice before, but how does someone follow it? Here are the 7 key elements that can help you dress for success and always look sharp.
1. Only Buy and Wear What Fits
Of all the style sins out there, wearing badly fitting clothes is probably the worst. Nothing can make or break your outfits like the fit. When it comes to looking good, it’s not your size or shape that matters, it’s the fit of your clothes.
It doesn’t matter how expensive an item is or how well it is made, if it doesn’t fit, it will never look good. And sadly, you won’t feel good in it, either.
It is easy to tell when something doesn’t fit properly. The buttons on your shirt are pulling, the sleeves are either too long or too short, the pants keep riding up. There is constriction or perhaps a sense of shapelessness. But above all, there is a feeling of all around discomfort.
Properly fitting clothes feel comfortable and drape over your body without stretching or billowing. They complement your silhouette and proportions and give your outfit a stylish edge.
Additionally, well-fitting clothes celebrate who you are, help lift your mood, set the emotional scene for success, and project confidence to others around you.
2. Learn the Marks of Quality
Wearing quality clothing is paramount to dressing for success.
Fortunately, there are several ways you can spot better quality clothing. The material clothing is made of, the workmanship, and the trims usually give a pretty good idea of the garment’s quality.
Quality clothes are often made with natural fibres like cotton, wool, and silk. Synthetic fabrics, such as nylon and polyester actually contain plastic. They look cheaper and feel rougher against the skin, too.
However, the quality of natural fabrics like cotton also varies. In order to figure out what grade of cotton something is made of is to see how it fares when held against the light. Fabric with a higher thread count will let less light through suggesting it is of better quality.