Updated: Sep 14, 2022
When we dress for success, we feel good, satisfied, confident and sure of ourselves. A successful outfit makes us feel great, which is something that women across the world strive for.
So, What is a Successful Outfit?
An outfit where all of its components go together to create a cohesive and well-put-together look.
Each piece should blend with taste and the outfit should feel complete. The details should be meticulous with nothing missing.
An outfit that is classy and stylish that compliments you and enhances your body shape.
Describing a successful outfit might sound simple, but choosing one to suit you is not always as straightforward!
Have you ever spent hours rummaging through your wardrobe trying to find the perfect ‘fit? Or perhaps you’ve felt unsure about the pieces you’ve put together and feel that something is missing or out of place?
5 Proven Techniques for Outfit Success
Now you know what a successful outfit is, let’s talk about how to create one!
1. Find Pieces That Enhance You
You may have heard this many times before, but it is important to remind you!
You may already have an idea of what pieces enhance your natural shape, but how many times have you opted for a totally different cut on the off chance that it might be slightly more flattering? And it’s not just the cut either.
The choice of colour also applies in this scenario.
So, before buying and wearing an item, make sure the piece fits you well and enhances your natural curvature.
A successful outfit is one that compliments your natural beauty and works to your advantage. Let’s stop falling for the ‘fast fashion' pieces that are clearly not designed for us or our body type.
Instead, let’s learn to accept, understand and love our individual body types and use it to our advantage. By choosing what’s best for you, you are setting yourself up for success.
Also, consider your colourimetry. Do you have a warm or cool complexion? If this is something you haven’t thought about before, you might find this tip helpful.
For pieces worn close to the face (jackets, coats, sweaters, blouses, shirts, tops, scarves), opt for colours that match your skin tone (warm or cool).
If you've really fallen for a piece that’s opposite to your natural complexion, use an accessory such as a scarf in the correct tone to help flatter you.
If you don't want to feel as dressed up and glamorous as someone else, that’s totally fine. There’s no need to compare yourself to other women.
What’s important is to know basic styles. In my course "Express your Individuality Through Dressing ", I include a comprehensive test and exercises to accurately determine the styles that directly relate to your personality and support the message you want to convey.
2. Choose a Style or a Universe
The easiest way to achieve a successful outfit is to establish a specific style for your outfit combinations.
For example, if you opt for a ‘rock’ style, you can tap into rock-style pieces when composing your outfit.
The same methodology applies regardless of whether your chosen style is tomboy, classic, casual or bohemian.
If you want to achieve a casual-chic look, you can put together an outfit using what I like to call the ‘casual-chic recipe’:
an outfit with casual pieces (e.g. t-shirt + chic joggers) + a chic piece (e.g. pumps);
or an outfit with chic pieces (e.g. male pants + shirt + blazer) + a casual piece (e.g. sneakers).
If you are a little more advanced in your stylistic approach, you can mix these styles. But always be mindful that some do not necessarily work well with each other.
For example, a bohemian style does not work too well with a casual or classic style. Often, the reason for outfits not feeling complete is due to the mixing of clashing styles. So if you are not sure what you like or what suits you, stick to one style ‘universe’, and keep things simple and specific.
Once you have more confidence in styling and putting together pieces, you can start experimenting and pushing the boundaries!
A successful outfit is one in which the message is clearly communicated.
Our tendency as women is to add more to the outfit (especially at the last minute) which often results in confusing the message of the outfit.
Only wear pieces in your outfit that support the message you want to convey and remove anything that doesn't help (even if you really love those jewels or accessories!).
4. Harmony of Colours and Materials
In a successful outfit, the colours and materials work together in harmony.
Consider your fabric choices and try to avoid anything that clashes, instead opting for pieces that enhance one another.
For example, linen does not work terribly well with vinyl fabrics.
You can add character to your look by varying the type of materials used. For example, when the materials are varied and create harmonious contrasts.
If you wear a silk dress, which is fluid and smooth, with veil tights and smooth leather boots, it will all be too smooth and perhaps a little bland.
To create depth, wear your silk dress with lightly embossed tights and suede boots, to break up the fabrics and textures. The result? A successful outfit!
For colours, try to avoid defaulting every decision to black (we’ve all done it). Try more ambitious mixes, such as different shades, complementary colours and patterns.
5. Pay Attention to Detail
Take care of your outfit down to the finest of details to help create a clear and consistent message through your clothing.
When I say ‘details’, I am often referring to accessories. The aim is to consider each of these accessories and determine whether they complement the rest of the outfit.
For example, does the jacket match the rest of the outfit? Are the shoes suitable?
When selecting your accessories, don’t just go on a whim. Instead, select your pieces according to their versatility and the possibilities they will offer you.
You can apply the rule of volume balance here; wearing a short jacket with your long dresses or a loose jacket with your figure-hugging dresses and skinny jeans. Stuck for shoe inspiration? Here are 5 absolutely essential pairs to suit all occasions:
Chunky heel ankle boots
In the Getting Started eBook, I explain why these shoe choices are essential and which models and colours to choose for maximum possibilities.
On a final note, remember that accessories should strengthen, shift or enhance your outfit. If they don't play any of these roles, then they don't belong, and you should consider putting them back in your wardrobe for next time!