A Beginner’s Guide to Power Dressing 2017
You’re anxious and excited all at the same time. Your appointment just got confirmed and you can’t believe while your peers are still stuck on a long chain of interviews, you’ve scored your dream job at your dream office already! And you can’t wait to get out there and start to make your way up to that Forbes list you secretly keep a cutout of. Until you open your wardrobe that is. And then it strikes you there are other important decisions to be made besides which font to choose for your presentation.
In a cut-throat world..
of competitiveness, only a fool misses out on opportunities to get their “I mean business” message clear. No one wants to be that fool. And that is why your choice of workwear stands to be as important as your capabilities at work, perhaps unfairly so. Everyone knows how to appropriately dress for work (I hope!) but how do you really stand out in the way that people around you receive the message loud and clear that you aren’t here to blend with the crowd, you’re here to replace the CEO one day. And that exactly is the difference between regular formalwear and power dressing.
The term power dressing is said have been born in the 1970s but really it has been around for as long as women have decided to empower themselves. Take the Chanel suit for example. Created in the 1920s, it was a clear defiance of the norm that women needed to go through the torture of corsets to look elegant. It revolutionized the way women saw the correlation between comfort and style. And in its truest essence, power is freedom from constraints, as is power dressing.
Wikipedia states the evolution of power dressing as a journey of subdued sexuality in women’s workwear, but in today’s day and age I beg to differ. It is easy to confuse this concept with sharply tailored mansuits or jackets with shoulder pads, but modern day power dressing is all about self-expression. And it always has been. When Yves Saint Laurent created the Les Smoking tuxedo, he did not limit fashion to a restrictive rule that was all-binding.
On the contrary..
he created a window from which to escape the stereotyping of dresses being the staple in a woman’s wardrobe. And in my mind, power dressing is a revolution expressed through your attire. And while the term immediately brings to mind a Margaret Thatcher in her stern skirt suits, women choose to exist in a different tangent today. Sexuality is no more a thing to be ashamed of,and in order to flaunt their bodies better, they’ve learnt the importance of a healthy lifestyle, some even making powerful empires out of this obsession, which in turn have made even athleisure acceptable as workwear. Also, looking like a man no longer is the definition of a powerful woman, and floral prints and fluid silks have effortlessly made their way into power dressing.
For the uninitiated, therefore, it is important to remember that the quest for power by way of dressing is ultimately the journey of self-discovery and self-acceptance. I could harp on a list of dos and don’ts but there is nothing in this world that can look wrong on an original individual. A person who isn’t afraid to go after what she wants and is vocal about it, which power dressing ultimately endorses.
Author: Michelle Sonya of thehifashionsite.com
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