To be successful in the corporate world, you have to have quality corporate apparel. Whether you agree or not, the fact is you need to dress for success, and that means dress to impress. Quality corporate apparel makes you look sharp, neat, organized, which sends the crucial message that you are totally professional rather than casual about your business.
The question is, how do you go about choosing quality corporate apparel? There are certain guidelines that you want to follow. Let's look at some of the important ones.
First, carefully choose colors. If the colors of your corporate apparel don't complement your body's colors and skin tone, you will look washed out and tired. For example, if you have ruddy skin, light brown hair, and gray-green hazel eyes, you should wear tans, browns, greens, grays, and reds. Stay away from whites, creams, yellows, and pinks. You may be able to wear blacks and dark blues as long as you combine them with one or more of the "shoulds".
Next, wear clothing that makes your shape look attractive. This takes some understanding of, and honesty about, your proportions and body type. You might have to do some research or consult a tailor or fashion clothier. In fact, it might be a very good idea to find a reliable tailor and have your clothes custom altered or custom designed. Set aside funds for this in your budget.
You don't need a dozen pairs of shoes - even if you are a female. You don't need a suit or a dress or a blouse that you will wear only once every two weeks. Invest your apparel money into quality. Three to five suits or outfits of varying levels of dressiness (or that many each for warmer months and then for colder months) and, for a man, one or two pairs of shoes and three or four pairs for a woman is an abundance. Men: you can have a big variety of ties if you want. Women: go ahead and splurge on a diverse array of earrings or scarves.
You don't want to be out of style. If you're not sure if a certain suit or outfit is still "in", ask an image consultant or fashion clothier. It might be hard to give up a favorite piece of apparel, but business is business, and image is image.
While remaining current and trendy, always be yourself. Figure out how to develop your own style. You might think that corporate apparel is pretty much cookie-cutter, especially if you're a man, but that is not necessarily true – especially if you know how to effectively mix things up. Men can make personal statements with their ties, dress hankies, watches, cuff links, and lapel pins. Women can easily mix and match blouses, skirts, dress boots, shoes, scarves, jewelry, and so forth to show who they are in a corporate setting.
And here's a final tip: if you have more than one meeting in a day and you won't be able to change in between them, dress for the most formal one for the whole day. You'll look just right for the formal one and look like a superstar for the more casual ones.