Tips For Getting a Wardrobe Makeover
By Judith Rasband
Requests for “HELP” with wardrobe makeovers come by phone, by mail, and now by e-mail. Sometimes there is just a hesitant tap on my shoulder. Requests come because people are not satisfied with the way they look and feel about themselves, and the way others respond to them.
They are often dissatisfied with their lack of social or professional success or achievement. They want to make a positive change in their appearance that will make a positive change in their lives.
As an image management specialist, I have noted five factors which seem to be repeatedly responsible for dissatisfaction with a wardrobe.
The first factor is a lack of appropriate clothing in the closet for the occasions the individual wants or needs to become involved in. Often I see little chance for versatility in the clothing, since it is so-o-o casual or so-o-o highly decorated that the look can not possibly be changed. Often I see only extremes—”sloppy” or “grubby” and casual wear at one extreme and party clothes at the other—with nothing in between to wear appropriately to a meeting, a job interview, or dressy-day occasions.
On the other hand, persons involved in formal business often own only business day wear, with little in the way of casual or dressy clothes. In either case, the owners often limit their activities or feel awkward and out of place when they do participate. You need a range of clothing styles to complement and facilitate an interesting range of activities and occasions in your life.
The second factor is a lack of artistic coordination between the wardrobe items. The closet may be chock full of clothes, but the owner quite accurately complains, “I haven’t a thing to wear!” Again, there is little chance for versatility among the clothes. Workable wardrobes must consist of basic, coordinated styles, colors, textures, and patterns. When nothing mixes and nothing matches, there is a lack of harmony and the result is conflict and chaos between the clothes. It’s not only what you wear, it’s how you wear it.
The third factor is a lack of agreement or harmony between the personality traits of the individual and the personality traits communicated by the clothing in the wardrobe. The clothes might be too severe, strict and stern; too fussy, frilly and frivolous; or too bold, bright and brassy for the person who wears them. The wearer feels psychologically uncomfortable in the clothing. Sometimes the lack of harmony may be obvious to everyone but the wearer. At such times, people may thinking, “Who is she trying to be?” or “Who’s he kidding?” Again, it’s not only what you wear, it’s how you wear it!
The fourth factor is a lack of proper fit in clothing. Clothes may bind or pull, sag or wrinkle due to uneven distribution of weight, to variations in body proportions, or to poor posture. The wearer feels physically uncomfortable in the clothes. Poor fit is often more obvious to others than to the wearer and at times may become quite immodest, leading to personal embarrassment and criticism from others. How you wear your clothing is as important as what you wear.
A fifth factor is the total lack of fashionable clothing and may cause concern from some. Clothing is obviously out of date to the point of causing the owner to appear out of touch with today, not open to new ideas or receptive to change, and perhaps financially strapped. In such cases, the owner may feel hopelessly trapped in the past, tied to events that could be merely memories. If you feel dissatisfied with your appearance or the clothes in your closet, take hope and take charge.
- You can plan and work toward acquiring a cluster of basic clothes in classic styles that can be paired with many other clothes and accessories to create a variety of good looks and for many moods and occasions. See Cluster Your Clothes For Men and Women or Wardrobe Strategies For Women in Conselle’s Bookstore. (If you have need, we can direct you to unique and creative clothes as well.)
- You can become more familiar with your personality traits and personal values, and the clothing cues that reflect or communicate them to you and to others. See Clothes Power or Wardrobe Strategies For Women in Conselle Bookstore.
- You can look in the mirror and become more aware of your physical build and personal coloring. Yes, your mirror can be your best friend, telling it like it is, so you can make clothing selections more objectively. You can learn to balance, counter-balance, and flatter your figure, and become part of the color scheme with your clothes. See Fabulous Fit and ColorSense or Wardrobe Strategies For Women in Conselle Bookstore. More coming.
- You can make wise decisions about the fit and compatibility of clothing for your figure and personality. See Fabulous Fit and Personal Style or Wardrobe Strategies For Women in Conselle Bookstore.
- You can become aware of fashion forward trends, adding a touch of the trendy to your wardrobe to update your appearance. See Conselle’s Trendsletter.
- Conselle can help you. Just call, fax, mail, or e-mail your situation, concerns, and questions to Conselle. We’ll respond with specific suggestions for learning or book you for a local clinic or long distance personal phone consultation. We’re here to help!