The holiday season is upon us and as I am building my professional brand, there are a few events that I am planning on attending. Can you give me some advice on how to choose the most appropriate styles for each occasion?
~ Saint Nekeisha Claus
Dear Ms Claus,
Attending festivities during the holiday season is a great way to network and highlight and showcase your brand as a professional. However, care must be taken to ensure that your attendance at these events send the right message and builds the right image.
Rule number one: Never follow trends. This is simply because you do not want to invest in pieces that cannot be mixed and matched or worn all year round.
However, I always encourage persons to be adventurous and choose styles that not only look good but make you feel great as well.
Channel your inner personality and explore fun fresh looks that inspire you. I know this is not always easy as we are constantly inundated with images of fashion trends.
Dressing for the holiday party
Use this opportunity to sparkle a bit with sequins and rhinestones. Have some fun while doing this but just be careful not to go completely disco. If you prefer simple rather than glitzy, then make sure to have some stand out accessories and beautiful shoes. You can also find ways to incorporate high glam in a low glam way. For example, a simple pants suit with sparkly heels will bring out the holiday festiveness that you are seeking.
Office or corporate party
This should always be done with lots of thought. Pay close attention to lengths of dresses and cleavage. While you aim to shake that office/corporate look, remember that you always want to be viewed and treated as professional and with respect. A dress, romper or pants suit in a bold complementary colour is one way that you can step up your glam without looking tacky or overdone.
This is the occasion where you can bring out the glam and glitz and barely there (if you’re so inclined). Be as casual and festive as you like; after all, we should be comfortable among family.
New year's eve
New year’s eve should always be special whether you choose to attend church, a gala event, or spend time with family. What you choose to wear should set the tone for the projected you, stepping into the new year.
Remember that your confidence is the most beautiful thing you can put on. Dressing to impress is neither vain nor frivolous. Dressing your best should be about having no fear and doing what makes you feel comfortable. Inject some attitude into your look; be bigger and bolder than the clothes you wear.
I encourage you to take a fashion risk and embrace and celebrate you.
AFETT is a not-for-profit organization formed in 2002 with the goal of bringing together professional women and engaging in networking opportunities, professional training and business ideas. ASK AFETT is a column meant to address issues and concerns of professionals seeking advice to assist in progressing in their careers. Today's response was written by AFETT member, Cheryl Sue Wing director, Membership AFETT. Learn more about AFETT at www.afett.com, search for AFETT Events on Facebook, follow us @AFETTEXECS on Twitter or contact us at 343-2160. Email us your career-related questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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