The Meaning of Power Dressing

The Meaning of Power Dressing
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A swift look into the past and the image of Coco Chanel’s first little black dress that threw the entire world onto its knees instantly evokes a range of powerful notions: freedom, sex appeal, sensuality, strength, and class. The same designer has further enriched the fashion world with some of the world’s first power suits for ladies – even though it didn’t include a pair of pants, it still offered the same mighty impact as the manly version of it. Several years later, and Marcel Rochas went a step further by adding the pants into the mix. It was 1932, and it was early yet for the world to foresee the turmoil and the fashion visionaries who would truly transform the office dress code and the woman’s place in it.

The Meaning of Power Dressing
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Femininity in the spotlight

Once upon a time, the idea of a suit that was purely masculine was the dominant one in the realms of fashion and business alike. Not a single line or cut was meant to accentuate your curves, but broad shoulders were simply adored – and they still are, but they are no longer the sole and the key quality of these suits. Establishing power and authority with flair is now all the rage! In addition to the sharp cuts, modern-day fashion has elevated the idea of power dressing to embrace more authenticity as well as comfort. Whether you achieve that effect through texture, such as picking a velvet suit or a silky blouse to match your classic pants, or you’d just use a feminine accessory – the freedom is yours. Women have officially reshaped the notion of power into a more subtle, feminine look without reducing its “edge”.

The Meaning of Power Dressing
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The rise of athleisure

Many celebrities and designers have proudly joined the casual Friday bunch. The meaning of power is no longer restricted to high heels (although we still do adore them), or a fancy jacket. In fact, modern women have found a way to blend the comfort of sportswear with the haute look of suits, and voila! You now have an entirely new power dressing branch aptly named work leisure, which focuses on functionality and style in a single package. To put it in perspective, it’s now widely encouraged in offices all over the globe to wear your Adidas shoes with a pair of work-friendly leggings or a stretchy pencil skirt, and rock a classy Gucci purse to wrap up the look. Innovation is the name of the game, and more modern businesses are embracing this stylishly sporty look.

The Meaning of Power Dressing
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With your head held high

The one purpose of power dressing that hasn’t changed over the decades is building the right attitude with the right wardrobe. For some, it may come in the form of a Retold dress, for others, it may lie in one particular pair of black pumps. Whatever it is, if it elevates your mood, makes you fix your posture, and look your setbacks straight in the eye, it’s your power dress code. Achieving confidence and authority may be the underlying purpose of your office wardrobe, but it also needs to help you exude the qualities that will ensure that authority and inspire that confidence. The beauty of it is that you can find your go-to combos and define them yourself, as long as they resonate with your personality, they truly don’t have to bow to any trends. Timeless is always welcome, but who’s to say you cannot create your own timeless?

The Meaning of Power Dressing
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No longer monochrome

We no longer have to be the Men in Black every time we dress for the office. Times have changed to include a wide array of hues that are still versatile enough to be mixed and matched while introducing a level of colorful creativity into this fashionable mix. In fact, pastels have become no less powerful than your traditional black or grey suits. They are merely more feminine and stylish while preserving the same level of prestige that comes with suits. As of recently, completely white, red, and royal blue suits the likes of DVF have caught the eye of the public, and are slowly becoming the latest office craze with a colorful twist. Make your palette work for you by introducing more variety, and you’ll feel even mightier wearing them!

The Meaning of Power Dressing
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Fashion as a statement

The suit has officially come out of the closet as one of the top picks for celebrities and influential individuals today who use it to make a difference. This year’s Golden Globe alone serves as a shining example of women wearing black as a unified statement against sexual harassment and other still pressing issues of gender inequality. It seems that the power suit in all of its wonderfully courageous shapes and forms still has plenty of work to do. As an item made against prejudice and inequality, now more than ever, you have the choice to use your power dressing to truly make a powerful statement – one that will inspire other women to join the cause.


Guest post written by Claire Hastings / follow her on Twitter

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