Power dressing, love it or hate it it works!!!
We are often confronted by what our image says about us, we may want to deny the reality of that as it means we may well have to review how we are dressing and so it goes into the too hard basket. However, I find when I have this conversation with most people or present it in a workshop it resonates with them somewhere even if it is unacknowledged on a surface level.
An aspect of this is ‘Power dressing’ reserved mainly for the work place, although women can use it to protect their ‘territory’ by dressing in a certain way to warn other women off their man! think of night clubs, it’s alive and kicking, just like the peacock strutting her stuff!! The message is keep away!
For power dressing it conveys a wall of authority, competency and therefore power, I have something you want and I am perfectly capable of doing it.
The two best examples of this is Coco Channel and her tenancity, creativity and willingness to break boundaries by wearing trousers, you have heard the expression ‘you can tell who wears the trousers in that house’ The 80s is another beatiful example of women stepping into their own power. Why you may well ask, well what did it do for womens careers? Look at how women were percieved, they became powerhouses, stepping up the career ladder, commanding their real worth in the dollar sense in their own right, YES they always had the ability and were seizing the opportunity, an important element of this was Power Dressing. The women where driving it but they wanted to arrive as a ferrari rather than a mini, the difference, IMPACT!
What did the power suits women were wearing reflect???
Their masculine side! The shoulders were broad, think of the oversized shoulder pads, emulating mens, and their waists were no longer defined, giving them a boxy more square look like a man! We were saying we are equal!!
My job as an image consultant is to emulate our bodies into their best versions of hour glasses for women and T shapes for men. Why you may well ask. Since cave times the sway off a womans hips, her shoulders, decollatage and breasts displayed her feminity and her fertility, and for the guys, well we saw their broad shoulders as representimg their strength and ability to go and get that bison to feed us! (just like the animal kingdom have their versions we are no different). The sexual messages have not changed, it is in us, even if our world is unreconisagble to our ancestors.
Flicking into the 80s women were matching the men, however this was from the waist up, from the waist down skirts were shorter and shoes were high and pointed so displaying an aspect of their feminity too. Ying and Yang.
Next time you think what you are wearing doesn’t matter, observe how people treat you dressed as you are, after all we ar the biggest teachers of showing people how to treat us, what are you teaching? Mini or Ferrari?