“Dressing the part” is something that should be considered when getting ready in the morning. This might make all the difference in how people read someone’s intentions. It may affect whether someone is taken seriously or not. My latest lookbook victim, Danielle Cox -a broadcast journalism student- couldn’t have said it any better: “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
First impressions are based on body language, demeanor, and mannerisms and of course, how one is dressed.
Take the time to plan an outfit. It’s a great start to get a perfect look that will help send a certain message to others that will be viewing it. Danielle is not worried what others think about her, but she is concerned that if she dresses inappropriately, she may not be taken seriously. Danielle feels it’s important to pay closer attention to her wardrobe; she even told me she picks out and irons her outfit for the next day before bed. I think she’s on to something here. Danielle was so well put together when I met her; I asked that she duplicate the look for our interview nearly a week later. Her first impression had been made and was stuck in my mind.
Danielle wore a ruffled blouse with grey toothpick pants topped off with a rose-pink printed cardigan. The look was so sweet and feminine, and sophisticated too. The best part was her gray glitter flats. They were very playful and exciting. They added an appropriate amount of pizzazz that really jumped out and made a very strong first impression. I thought it was a seamless combination of simple pieces that were still strong enough to accompany a glittering pair of flats. She knew what worked with her body type and what colors were complimentary to her skin tone. All of these things are key factors that can make or break a look.
When I asked Danielle if she thought it was important to focus on style during college, all she said was, “It stresses me out when people come to class in sweats.” She explained that she works hard on her appearance so she can be taken seriously and feels that others should as well. I agree with her on that. I’ve mentioned the sweats and the bed head before, and I’ll do it again. Someone who wants to be taken seriously should dress professionally and have a polished look. This can accomplished by simply trying a different hairstyle or buttoning the top button of a blouse. Even drenching yourself in neutrals isn’t a bad idea; just add a splash of color or texture. Sophistication doesn’t have to mean boring. Try to break away from the ordinary and choose exciting, edgy pieces that will make you more noticeable and memorable.