Mark Twain said:
"Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society."
I feel certain Mr. Twain intended that to also include women and especially those who desire to have some influence on society or at least a segment of it. Do you want to know the secret; where to find it? How important is the presentation you intend to make each time you venture out of your house to engage in any number of activities?
Are you among those who can stand before a well-organized closet neatly stocked with items that fit your every need - star pieces that present you with endless combinations of looks and afford you the freedom to mix and match as your mood dictates?
The truth is... that's the closet worth having.
The truth is... those who have discovered the secret to a working closet have also found the secret to their best presentation and thereby continually reap the benefits.
Why? Because the investment they made in time and energy (and yes, money) in selecting the clothes that went into their closet (every article, every suit, every skirt, jacket, blouse, pant or top) pays off in the guaranteed success of their presentation. And with each winning presentation they confirm their best selves. What a powerful feeling! What an amazing boost to your self esteem and a genuine reaffirmation that you are wonderfully made.
Conversely, are you among the many who stand in front of a closet that's bursting at the seams with clothes?
Are there items spilling onto the floor, falling off the shelves and double hung on the rack? Yet you confess, "I have nothing to wear! What am I doing wrong?"
Exasperating, isn't it?
There you stand in front of this huge collection of..."stuff" that you've purchased season after season (some of which still have the price tags in tow) and the dilemma looms large in your head. You have a job interview tomorrow - or a presentation to make - or a business trip or a prospective new client to meet, or a dozen other similar scenarios that require your "best" professional look. What do you do? Seriously, what do you do?
Well, if you're reading this article the night before your big day, and you need an answer now, here's some advice to consider.
I call it the secret of the three Fs.
- Go for the pieces that Fit, Frame, and Flatter.
Is that some magic formula you ask? Well... it does embody keys used to redirect one's attention and focus, and it will, if followed, deliver some miraculous results. However... the greatest benefit you'll gain is in overcoming the predicament of the "nothing-to-wear" woes and discovering the joy of dressing. Let me share these secrets with you.
- (Secret #1) The article should Fit your body.
One of the most important aspects of dressing your body is the fit of the garment.
If it is either too large or too small it is equally unflattering and cannot convey a polished professional look. You will end up drawing unwanted attention to an area and creating a false focal point.
You should stand before a full length mirror. It's wonderful if it's a 3-way mirror because a 3-way affords the greatest advantage for objectively viewing your body from every angle. It is also essential that you wear the proper undergarments so you get a true sense of the fit.
Have a selection of shoes/boots and accessories to complete your statement allowing you to view a "total" look as others will see you.
Take your time, be objective and honest with the person you see reflected back at you from the mirror. Don't ignore the signals registering in you. Trust your gut feeling. Don't override your instincts. The unedited signal your reflection is sending you is probably right on. Honor it. I can't stress this point too strongly.
Too big hides you, makes you look sloppy, and creates an uneasy curiosity in the eyes of the observer. Unless you're wearing an oversized top (say an unbuttoned shirt) as an accent piece over a well-defined sleek signature look you risk sending a mixed message.
Clothing that is too small is equally unattractive in that it negatively showcases your body. Even on an otherwise shapely figure garments worn sizes too small send negative messages in the professional arena.
- (Secret #2) The article should Frame your figure.
Your silhouette is unique to you and your self expression.
Regardless of your size you have a distinct shape. Whether you are tall or short, curvy or slim, broad shouldered or narrow, whether you have full or slight hips, an ample bosom or a boyish look or any number of unique characteristics, knowing and under standing your shape will prove indispensable in guiding your purchases and directing how you express yourself. Surprisingly, this understanding will be reflected in the way you experience and enjoy your lifestyle.
YOU are the picture within the frame. Ultimately, you become who YOU are presenting. So... choose the right frame to showcase YOU.
- (Secret #3) The article should Flatter your best feature.
This is the crowning touch, the bonus move, the two-for-one sale when your outfit flatters your best feature.
Decide what that feature is.
Is it your face or neck or shoulders, your bust or waist, your hips or your legs?
You have an idea what it is.
What is the mirror telling you?
What have you always received compliments on?
Choose something that flatters that feature. Accentuate that area and focus the attention there.
Your confidence level will soar. You are instantly at ease. You can do anything. It's as if you're on center stage in concert with your own backup band and it's music to your ears.
What's your best feature?
Let your outfit play to it. Flatter it.
Express yourself without saying a word.
So... go ahead, reach into that closet and select something that embodies these features. Find that one piece that will enhance your presentation and enable you to project confidence while you conduct the business at hand.
Remember, your packaging expertise will improve in time as you make midcourse adjustments, appropriating what you observe that works for you and leaving what doesn't work on the cutting room floor. Train your eye to recognize what resonates with you. Open your mind to try something different. Adopt only what your comfort level will support. Above all, have fun in the process. Seek expert, professional help and input to move you along the way.
That's Packaging - the three Fs - Fit, Frame and Flatter -
The Secret to Your Best Presentation every time.
(c) 2007 KEH & ASSOCIATES