“I’m such a businesswoman - from nine till six,” says Julia Veltri, consultant in the category, "Fashion and Style"
Dear readers who sent questions about business style, thank you for your patience. Today we shall look at all the problems, concerning the eternal question about the balance between "me worker" and "me alive" and combinations of the styles in detail.
How can I combine a strict, dry, office dress code with my lively, young, merry and free nature? How should I combine the requirements and need to express myself with clothes? What, in spite of everything, is most important: my personality or my image? What I am inwardly or what I am outwardly? Is it possible to change inwardly, having changed outwardly, and if yes – isn’t it dangerous?
So, eight hours a day, five days a week, you cease to be a person and change in to a staff member. Your appearance ceases to be your personal concern. Someone else dictates what you should wear and what way you should comb your hair. School is behind you, but the uniform – here it is, on a clothes hanger in the closet, only the cost is twenty times higher. There is no more youthful happiness in getting a tattoo in defiance of the dean, but you begin to ask, “How old am I?” “Who am I?”
”What do I look like?” “Where does my cover end and where do I begin as myself?”
Don’t worry that a classic style, ordered by a dress code, doesn’t correspond to your nature and is not "your" style that you would have chosen. At work, your image is an instrument, a way of influencing people around you -- calm, taciturn, inspiring through visual perception. Use it without being afraid that you will sink in it. The fact is that your work clothes add very little to your personality. This is normal and there is nothing terrible about it. Just the same, your job differs from your leisure time in that, while working, sometimes you need to do what you do not want to, but not that is necessary. Clothes for work are often chosen not on the principle "like - does not like", but "corresponds to - does not correspond to" and this must not trouble you. It is only a job -- it is not your life.
A business suit has two functions: a demonstration of status and conformity. In fact, these are two sides of the same coin. The suit allows you to blend in with society, to show that you are a part of a working process, and, at the same time, occupies a particular place in that process, plays the ordered role. Your individuality takes a back seat – the important things are your work qualities, efficiency and correspondence to an specific position. The classic style and quality, rather expensive cloth, not striking the eye embellishments of high quality provides these functions.
An important peculiarity of the business suit is its neutrality. As we know, tastes are different, and in private life we cannot simply pay attention to this: "You do not like my clothes? So much the worse for you". In this way, we choose people who are close to us. In a business situation we aren’t allowed to do such a thing, so we should wear the kind of suit that will not bother the majority, will not irritate, will not strike the eyes, will not cause unnecessary emotions. This means wearing neutral, muted tones and conservative cuts.
So, cut and color are the two main expressive powers in an ensemble, two ways to form, through visual perception, your image ("I’m a businessman, a serious professional, that is relied on"). Color and cut speak together about business ability, respectability, efficiency, discipline, the skill of fitting into society, of being submitted to and to submit.
Probably, you want your business uniform to reflect something of your character. Is there any place for expressing yourself in a world of gray and brown shades, English coats, straight skirts and pumps? Is it possible to combine and mix two or more styles? Can personal style and business styles blend into one?
It is possible. There is only one unwritten rule: the higher your position, the more freedom you have in choosing a business suit. In any case, unusual elements that do not suit the business style can be present in your suit only in a moderate degree. It is better if, in modifying a suit, you confine yourself to only one expressive element: color, cut or a way of accessorizing (the accessories, embellishments, and strictly cloths’ decoration).
If neutral muted tones do not fit you, or you do not feel comfortable wearing them, try to change the colors. Choose a suit of colorful, happy tones (not loud, but open and clear). In this case, you should pay more attention to choosing the cut so that it doesn’t go out of the classic
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