Category Archives: Fashion & Style

self love

FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU!

By | Fashion & Style, Personal Growth | 9 Comments

self love

Valentine’s Day is peering around the corner, but tell tale seeds of this “holiday” began sprouting immediately after the Christmas decorations were removed from their 75% off racks. The requisite hearts and flowers are found sprinkled throughout drugstores, grocery stores, retail outlets, even gas stations.

But what does this day really mean? To YOU?

Perhaps you love to present friends and loved ones, or a significant other, with treats, cards and thoughtful gifts. Or maybe you just ignore it and think February 14th is a Hallmark creation and just don’t care.

Whatever category you fit into, the 14th of February is a good time to look at LOVE.

WE can’t ignore the signs, so why not take some time to reflect. And who better to shower with hearts and flowers than the person you should love the most – YOU!  How to Fall in love with YOU?

I think we have all heard a million times, that you can’t love anyone else until you really, truly love yourself.

That is the ultimate gift we have to give ourselves. And sometimes this is very, very, very difficult to do. We look in the mirror, and instead of seeing our authentic selves, we see flaws. Our nose is crooked, our crow’s feet have turned into ostrich feet, our tummies pooch, our thighs jiggle. These are our perceived flaws, but not what makes us the unique authentic individual that shows up to our friends.

I do take the stand that image is important and what the outside world sees should reflect the inner you. I truly believe that is important. If you take pride in your appearance, you are saying to those with whom you come in contact, “I care about me, and that means that I will care about you.”

I am speaking here in terms of being clean, and pulled together, no matter what your personal style. However, the true you, the one that is only enhanced by clothing, accessories, hair color and nail polish, should shine through no matter what you are wearing. That is the YOU that needs pampering and polishing and should be handled with loving- kindness. If you treat yourself with respect and love, others will treat you the same way. Kind of like the golden rule, only let’s call it the Ruby Rule. View and treat yourself as you wish others to view and treat you.

If you take time for a bit of pampering and self-appreciation you are showing yourself that you truly do care about YOU. That self love is important to you.

I suggest finding one quality about yourself that you think is great. Or put on a garment, necklace, pair of shoes, scarf  – an item that makes you feel fabulous. Then take a look in the mirror and say WOW! I love my long legs or this dress makes me feel elegant, spirited, fanciful, (insert only positive adjectives!). Those shoes ROCK my world, I feel like I can conquer the skies in this scarf while I channel Amelia Earhart.

It is my belief that we absolutely do not take enough time to love ourselves. We are unduly harsh. We would not look at our friends and say ugh, you have such stringy hair, or your booty really needs a good work out. So why on earth would we say that to our self. If indeed the greatest goal and lesson on earth is to love everyone.

Now, in case you are wondering, I have had to do this time and again and it’s all about my hair.

A quick personal story. I was born with uber curly hair, kinky, dry , frizzy strangely blonde hair. It was the bane of my existence as a young child and teenager. At age 9 I had huge poofy pigtails and the cutest boy in 4th grade took it upon himself to put a grasshopper in one of my high piggies. And that grasshopper got stuck in my lovely locks. As I screamed for a teacher, the kids laughed and thought it was the funniest thing ever. Stayed with me until this day. At 16 at a pool party, a big garbage can full of sodas and ice was tipped over and the cute teenage host said, “It’s ok, let’s just turn Kim upside down an use her as a mop”.  Hmmm…..again stayed with me forever.

As I grew into my 20’s, I learned,( sort of), to love my hair. Now, age and hormones coupled with child birth, have since tamed my locks and blowdryers and round brushes work miracles. BUT I can now say I absolutely LOVE my hair. I have worked very hard to dispel the beliefs which were engrained in my psyche at a young age. Loving yourself really does work.

 

SO BEGIN WITH numero uno.  YOU. Here is a self love exercise.  I know for a fact that if you look in the mirror at least once a day and say something positive to yourself – you will begin to feel the love – that’s how I came to love my beautiful hair. When you feel the love, you can give the love and in turn you can receive the love.

We also need to gift ourselves with treats and presents along with our daily positive words. Weekly or monthly treat yourself to something just for you. It needn’t cost a lot of money. You can take 15 minutes to soak in a tub or take a trip to the library and sit down for 15 minutes to read a magazine. Even meditating is a gift to our selves. I know how difficult it can be to do these things, as I tend to lean toward the hyper side on the activity scale.

It really works to spend time and energy into nourishing you. Purchase a magazine and actually sit down and read it (we all need a little Hollywood banter now and again, so it’s ok, I give you permission to pluck US, or PEOPLE off of the checkout stand). I don’t buy into people’s excuses when they say they don’t have ten minutes to spare.

MAKE the time!

It has been proven that it takes 21 days to change a pattern or behavior. Try loving yourself for 21 days. Put a heart sticker on a calendar or sheet of paper for 21 days each time you give a positive affirmation to YOU!

Keep this up and the love will flow from person to person, continent to continent….it all begins with falling in love with YOU!

Kim

P.S. We would love to hear how you create your self love. Leave us a comment below and share with us your thoughts.

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new year new you

NEW YEAR, NEW YOU, NEW WARDROBE or not?

By | Fashion & Style, Women's Lifestyle | 3 Comments

new year new youIt’s a New Year, it’s a New You, it’s a New everything, Or is it?  It’s that time of year when everyone heads to the gym to begin their new regimen.

The airwaves are filled with commercials touting the latest in weight loss promotions from all the usual suspects. It’s enough to make anyone want to throw out the butter and sugar even if they don’t have a pound to lose. (Not that ridding your shelves of those items is a bad thing!)

But I’m not your weight loss guru, or your exercise trainer, I’m simply a girl (ok, woman) who loves fashion and beauty and wants everyone to feel great about themselves regardless of weight, size or even hair color!

And since it’s a New Year – it’s time to take stock of who we were last year and who we want to be this year and what better way to do it than by enhancing our image and putting our best selves out there for the world to admire.

BABY IT’S COLD OUT THERE…

Yes, the temperature across most of the country hovers in the “Oh so cold” zone, even here in Northern California, and yet magazines and stores are prompting us to buy, buy, buy – those adorable salmon colored shorts with the bright green t shirt.

You know, for our upcoming “cruise”. The resort wear has hit the shelves.

Really – even Target has its bathing suits blaringly displayed as you enter the store. (I went to search for toasty ski clothes, but nooooo).

Not to be disrespectful to those of you gathering your string bikinis and crocheted cover-ups as you plan for your winter getaway, but let’s be real. As tempted as I am by the really fun, bright colors in the stores, I know that in a few short months, when it is still cold outside, all those items will be on sale!

So, I’m here to propose something. Should you get the urge, in between paying bills and cleaning up the holiday messes, to head to your nearest store to purchase a little something to cheer you up – DON’T DO IT!

Instead, head for your closet. That’s right, the very same closet into which you peer and say, “Oh, but I have nothing fun to wear!”.

Just so you know, I tried this experiment, because I didn’t want to propose something I hadn’t attempted myself. Go into that closet, or wardrobe, or chest of drawers and find the brightest, most spring-like item you can.

FYI, I discovered an old turquoise cashmere sweater that I thought I had gotten rid of. Perfect color to inject some spring into my January wardrobe.

The style is a bit outdated, but hey it’s cashmere and a beautiful color and well….you know. I paired it with a white t-shirt (good year round item) and a scarf of many colors. The scarf is a wintery scarf in cotton, with dark navy and black, purple and a hint of turquoise.

It was just what I needed to make me feel peppy and pretty in the freezing cold. A burst of Spring without spending a cent, and meanwhile I found a few items to donate while in the midst of “shopping” my closet. Please know that I am not suggesting you break out the white shorts with black tights (for warmth).

All I’m hinting at, is that if you search through your existing clothes, you WILL unearth a treasure or two that you can start wearing now to make yourself feel oh so cheery.

new year, new you

 

SPRING CLEANING IN JANUARY

I think I’ve mentioned this one or twenty times, but DONATE and clear that clutter. Get a start on Spring Cleaning now. SO when the sales come around in March and April (of all the resort wear in the stores now), you will know what you want/need to update your wardrobe.

I truly believe that when you donate items you really know you will never wear again, you are not only clearing the clutter literally, you are making an opening for other things, material or not, to come into your life.

It’s a great way to start Your New Year, New You, Life Without Limits!

Just as you would take a deep cleansing breath in yoga, in order to make space for new fresh air to enter and cleanse your body, when you rid your closet of the items merely taking up space, you are declaring that I no longer need you, but that which I do need and desire will come into my life.

IF YOU SIMPLY MUST SHOP…

Now is the time to hit the sales for items such as Cashmere anything. Retailers want to clear their own clutter in order to make even more space for the resort wear and spring merchandise lurking in the stock rooms.

It is also a great time to check out boots. If you are fortunate enough to find a pair in your size – there are still at least three months this season to look adorable in a pair of boots, short or tall. Boots can make your outfit rock!  You can wear them well into spring with a short or long skirts, no tights required in warmer weather. They really dress up a simple pair of leggings or work out bottoms, if you just throw on a longer sweater or shirt.

 

GO FORTH AND BE CUTE!

And, my motto for the New Year – yup….Go Forth and Be Cute!  I am over the age where people call me cute, but I still like to wear cute clothes and I just LOVE the saying.

So, I challenge all of you who want to take your life to the limit – to take a look at YOU in 2013.

What do you want others to see when they meet you?

Put on some color, apply some bright lipstick, do what feels right to you, but do something to enhance your life and show up!

Really and truly SHOW UP in 2013!

While you work on your new year, new you life without limits, make your appearance count. GO FORTH AND BE CUTE!

 

To Your New Year New You,

Kim

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fashion must haves

Fashion Must Haves

By | Fashion & Style | 8 Comments

LIFE MUST HAVES!

You know when you sit down to write that you need either a computer, or a pen and pencil and pad of paper. When you want to make a meal, you need the recipe, the ingredients and the right cooking utensils. If you want to plant a garden, you look for the best soil, seedlings or plants, the right location and water.

OK – HOW ABOUT YOU?

You are ready to head out for the day, you have a meeting, you are giving a talk, or you are running errands. Do you have what you need?

As with anything we do, we should all take care of ourselves as much as we take care of our plants, the food we put into our bodies or the books we write, lectures we give, paintings we create. AND YES folks, that’s where fashion comes in.

I’ve said it before, but when you first head out the door – put on that smile.

Even if you don’t feel like it, you’ve heard “fake it til you make it”. Putting on a smile as your first accessory will lead you gleefully through the day. Along with a little blush, a spritz of your favorite scent and clothing that projects your mood, you will be ready to conquer the world, yoga class, supermarket, or client.

10 ITEMS every woman entrepreneur should (not must) have in your wardrobe. (adapted and modified from Tim Gunn’s list)

#1 – The LBD -Fashion Must Have Numero Uno!

I covered the Little Black Dress in my last post (review for more details!) Just remember for day – you can pop on a jewel toned cardigan – all the rage this fall – and pair it with a fun pair of flats. At night add a funky necklace, (faux diamonds always fit in), and strappy sandals and you have changed your look to reflect a more sophisticated you.

#2 – A great fitting pair of jeans. This might take some time in several fitting rooms trying on pair after pair, but it will be worth it. A dark denim pair of jeans, which sit right below the belly button, can be dressed up or down. A boot cut pair works on every body type. You can wear flats, heels, or boots, but you will have to determine which you want to wear most in order to get the correct length. You can always find a type of sewing tape which can be used to create a hem if you want to leave them a bit longer.

#3 – A Fabulous white shirt. A great clean and crisp look that fits in anywhere is the white cotton blouse/shirt. Paired with Jeans and a chunky belt, looks fresh any time of the year.

With an a-line or pencil skirt – looks sophisticated and tailored. With a pair of nice slacks the white blouse is oh so work appropriate

#4 – A Fitted Blazer - Each season, the jacket is brought back to us in several incarnations. This fall jackets are nipped in at the waist and a little bit shorter than in seasons past. And the peplum is back in style! First found in the 1940’s this beloved style resurfaces every decade or so. Adorable to showcase a tiny waist and camouflage those that have a little extra hip area.

I love a tweedy navy jacket that I purchased at ZARA in San Francisco. A fabulous store – but not found all over.

Great prices for on-trend pieces that fit well and don’t fall apart after only one season. I wear my jacket with my denim jeans and my colored jeans, but it could also be easily worn over a solid navy dress or with a pencil skirt.

#5 – A Scarf - or two – or twelve. (My favorite Fashion Must Have!) I am not kidding you here, the addition of a scarf to almost any outfit adds a bit of style and shows you have flair!

Mostly worn in the cooler months, but I’ve seen the fashionistas sport them in mid summer as well, scarves do more than keep you warm. Tissue weight cotton scarves are great year round, as they float and flow gracefully around your neck. They can be worn indoors unlike wool or cashmere which are really for warmth. Scarves are everywhere you look now, just hit up Target for some fun inexpensive finds.

#6 – A versatile dress - A day dress in a bright color or subtle print can often replace other sportswear items in our wardrobe. Everyone should have one go to dress in their closet. A shift dress, made popular by Michelle Obama is a current style favorite. If you have a waist you would like to accentuate, shirt waist dresses are also in vogue.

# 7 – Sweat suit Alternative – I know can you believe that this is a Fashion Must Have? I can!)
So many times we want to just be comfy and cozy when we dash out of the house for a carton of soy milk, or maybe a much needed frozen yogurt treat.

You just never know whom you are going to encounter as you dash through the day. Don’t throw on those old gray sweats from college with the tattered hoodie. You absolutely can wear cozies that are cute!

My most favorite work out store is Lulu Lemon – although on the super pricey side, they have so many great looks that are absolutely cute enough to sport all day long, even after yoga, or a spinning class. (I check out their sales or ask for gifts from there).

However, Target (and the like) are much more reasonably priced and you can get knock off ‘s that will also do the trick. Just try to be a little coordinated, so you look polished even when casual.

#8 – A Nice pair of Slacks - I also covered black dress pants in my last blog. So check that out for more details as well. There are simply occasions where you need to have a decent pair of pants when jeans won’t do or it is too cold to wear a skirt or dress (if you love them, like I do).

Just have one pair in a solid color in your closet. Black is great, but navy or charcoal work as well with all colors. You can make these fun and funky by throwing on leopard belt perhaps, and a bright red shoe!  Just step out of the box and try something new. Even those in a corporate environment can take a little risk with an accessory now and then!

# 9 – A Trenchcoat – For years, I avoided wearing this fashion staple. It brought to mind the fashion clones in Manhattan in the 80’s where everyone was spotted wearing a khaki colored trench coat. Egads – where is the personality?

BUT, I can truly say for the first time I purchased a leopard print trench for the rain. After searching everywhere I found one at Nordstrom Rack. It is the classic trench styling, but with a WOW print.

Since we have already had our first rain in Northern California, I happily donned my trench, with black rain boots and I really felt quite fashionable.

Tim Gunn says it should be in every woman’s wardrobe, so who am I to argue with such a fashion guru! BUT try to reflect YOUR personality by finding one in a bright color, with a wild print or  get one in basic black and add that pop of color with a scarf, printed umbrella or polka dotted rain boots!

$10 – The Perfect Tote - (Disclosure – this is not on Tim Gunn’s list!) This is my own addition (along with scarves) to Fashion Must Haves.  I am a big believer that the right tote completes your outfit. Realistically, how many of us can carry a teeny, tiny, yet adorable, little purse?

No matter what industry you are in, at one point we need to carry more than a wallet and keys. Totes have replaced brief cases for most women. . There are a million, trillion totes out there, and I am in constant search for the perfect one.

So, instead of one, I choose to fill my closet with a variety of tote bags for use depending on the weather, my outfit, and my mood!

You can always pop your adorable little purse inside your tote so you don’t have to “lug” two things. Less is definitely more and who wants to look like a bag lady? I love shopping flash site sales for totes, as you just never know what colorful creation you are going to come upon.

So ladies – get out there and be your authentic self.

Let your personality shine through what you wear and how you carry yourself. And remember to do so with a smile!

Kim

P.S. We would love to hear what your fashion must have is. Leave us a comment below and share with us. As always feel free to share this post with your family and friends.

 

Photo credit – freedigitalphotos.net

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update your look

DARE to Update Your Look!

By | Fashion & Style | 7 Comments
BOO!It’s almost the witching hour and a legitimate opportunity to change your look!
Whether it is with a tiara, wig or witches hat, you can be whomever you wish for one day a year.
No holds barred, go full out, change it up and have fun!
Like other self proclaimed fashionistas, I  love Halloween because it gives me another opportunity to dress up!
I can be wacky, colorful and add glitter everywhere. Being of a certain age, wearing glitter and fishnets is somewhat frowned upon, but not on October 31st . I bring out my orange and black striped tights or my fishnets with plastic spiders going up the seam, skeleton earrings and whatever else suits my fancy. Generally it’s a two to three day affair.
If people point and stare – all the better!  Let this year’s holiday be the motivator you need to get started on a new more vibrant you.

YOUR AUTHENTIC IMAGE CAN CHANGE!

In my last post, I talked about discovering your authentic image. That is vital – but as is everything in our lives, we are a work in progress and we can change our image depending upon where we are in our lives at any given moment.

Which is why on Halloween, if you have the daring to go big, I say try out a new image. Even if you don’t go for dressing up in a costume, why not try dressing up as a Bohemian Barb, or a Conservative Cathy. Challenge yourself to go through an entire day dressing as someone you are not. See how people react to you. Note if you speak differently, react in a way unlike your usual self.

It is a fun and easy experiment which will get you out of your box!

BUT REALLY NOW

As it is Fall, it is the perfect time to talk about a few basic must haves for our wardrobe. You can’t pass a grocery store check out line without seeing the thick pages of the fashion magazines chock full of ads and editorial. Oh it can truly be overwhelming – what is hot, what is not. What was in last fall is out this fall, what’s a woman to do?

We can’t throw out everything in our closet each season. I can see women virtually everywhere screaming HELP!  And here I am – to help with a few basic tips.

Back to October – we can’t wear orange and black together ALL year, (unless you are a San Francisco Giants Fan – I am!). BUT it just so happens that orange is the “it” color of 2012 (ok, so maybe I have declared it to be so, but really it is and has been seen everywhere, from shoes to handbags to you name it !) And you can NEVER and I mean absolutely NEVER go wrong with a black pair of jeans, pencil skirt or trousers. (no matter if fashion editors proclaim, black is out, don’t you believe it).

In fact, if you are looking through your closet and you don’t own a black bottom (as it were). I suggest you make that the piece you go and purchase on your next shopping trip.

I personally vote for black jeans because they can be dressed up or down, with boots, heels, converse tennies or flats.  Make sure they have a little stretch in them so you are super comfy. Oh and speaking of shoes, unless you are suffering from a severe foot injury, try not to wear your running shoes, tennis shoes or cross-fit shoes, when you are going anywhere other than the gym (or maybe Disneyland!) There are so many comfortable AND stylish shoes. Not to be a brand promoter, but there are even some fab NIKE shoes in the brightest neon shades that will certainly make your outfit spunkier than the old white ones if you absolutely positively MUST wear tennis shoes.

BACK to BLACK

I know I needn’t remind you women entrepreneurs out there that it is time to LET GO of the Mom Jeans. You know what I’m talking about. High waisted, no shape, elastic waist jeans from the “olden” days. I promise you that if you get a new pair of jeans with an even slightly lower waistband, you will take 10 years off, (and really, who doesn’t want that, it’s like a pain free face lift, only it’s a body lift!). So you know you are going to invest in a pair of black jeans.

You don’t need to take out a second mortgage to do so. Jeans range in price from $20 to over $200.  Check out Old Navy, GAP, Target or Marshalls for bargains. Granted it takes more time to search and find exactly what you want at discount stores, so keep that in mind.

TERRIFIC TROUSERS

Let’s say you go to an office, or feel that jeans are just not going to work for you. In that case, you need a pair of elegant and timeless black trousers.  Stay away from pleats – not flattering. Select a pair that have a straight-ish leg. Avoid the too flared look, again, not flattering.

You can find trousers in a variety of styles and prices everywhere. HINT – Express, found in most malls, carries a great fitting selection of trousers. Find a fabric that flows, not cotton, and doesn’t doesn’t wrinkle easily. It really is worth investing in a good pair as these can last for years and you WILL get your money’s worth.

THE RETURN OF THE PENCIL SKIRT

Now you have your jeans, (just play along with me as we build your wardrobe). Let’s get you into a pencil skirt. Most body types can actually wear this. If you are a little more pear shaped though, you will want to try for a slight a-line skirt, NOT too voluminous.  Trending now are skirts that end right at the knee and also right below. If you are a petite person, opt for the shorter length.

Long skirts are also still hanging around, and they are so comfy. l wear my long black skirt on airplane rides, with a casual tee, jean jacket and TOM’s (shoes for those of you who don’t know).  Perfection. Elastic waist (it’s ok on a long skirt) and a stretch jersey fabric allows me to tuck my legs under me and still look like a lady. BONUS – it keeps me warm on those frigid flights.

THE LBD

Otherwise known as  the Little Black Dress! A versatile item to have in your closet that can be dressed up or down and can be found at all price points.  I do run into the occasional woman who says they just don’t like to wear black. I get that. At certain points in our life, we just feel like it is too harsh of a color. Then go for navy or charcoal and you will get a similar effect.

A little black dress can take you from day to evening with the addition of a few accessories and a change of shoes. Of course there are little black dresses that say WOW, for evening and those more appropriate for a work setting, with sleeves and a high neck. I always recommend that you have two LBD’s. One appropriate for a conservative gathering and one for the night on the town. You can always get a black dress with a high neck and low back which serves a dual purpose. With a cardigan or jacket for day – slip it off and whoa baby, head out for the evening.

A basic black dress, top, skirt, or pants, can always be brightened up with a scarf, contrast colored sweater or accessories. For those on a strict budget, an inexpensive black dress is easy to find and often no one would know if you were wearing an item  from a discount store or a high end retailer. One of the beautiful benefits of black clothing.

I could go on and on….but you will have to wait until my next post….where I will give you what I think are the top ten fashion must haves….

Have an authentically fashionable day……s

Kim

P.S. Leave us a comment below. As  professional women or women entrepreneurs what challenges have you had in creating your authentic image? We would love to hear from you and as always feel free to share this post with the women in your life.

 

Kim conducts seminars on Awakening the Authentic You, Frugal Fashion, and Casual Friday does not mean Sweats! She also works one on one to help women uncover their authentic style.

Kim can be reached at kimduffselby@gmail.com  On twitter: http://twitter.com/Kimduffselby and FB:https://www.facebook.com/kimduffselby

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women entrepreneur authentic image

YOUR AUTHENTIC IMAGE!

By | Fashion & Style | 10 Comments

OK admit it!  You care about how you look.(At least I hope you do!) Say it out loud, scream it to the clouds, because you SHOULD care about your appearance. It is not frivolous or vain to want to project a sparkling image and if that means shopping til you drop, getting a makeover or highlighting your hair, YOU ARE WORTH IT!

As women entrepreneurs or professional women, how you present yourself is an important step in your success.

Remember that like it or not, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. So make certain that the YOU that the world is seeing is the one that you feel confident portrays your authentic image. Research says that upon meeting someone, it takes 10 seconds for that person to form an opinion of you. Is what they see, what you want them to?

WHY ME?

I have been a fashion follower all my life. I like to claim that having been gifted with a mink diaper cover at 6 weeks old, my love of fashion took hold and has ruled my life, sometimes to the point of obsession (not a good thing!). However, my foray into fashion has taken me from GLAMOUR Magazine where I traveled the country and brought the pages of the magazine to life, to a job as a Fashion Director at a high end retailer, to my own company, Fashion is Fun where for 20 years I produced benefit fashion shows, primarily using “real” people as models.

It was while doing these shows that I realized just how important fashion can be to fueling your sense of self. I would often work with women who felt undeserving or incapable of walking the runway. This was either due to lack of a positive self-image, stage fright or just plain not wanting to do it. However, they would willingly put themselves out there, for the sake of walking with their child, which is why they volunteered in the first place.

I would say that all of the people with whom I worked, ended up having a positive experience, one that will remain with them their entire life.  And why? I helped them to see their authentic self through the right clothes, a change of attitude and a dose of hearty laughter.

BACK TO YOU..

As amazing women entrepreneurs and professional women, you are shaping and/or re-shaping your lives and with that comes the ever so important task of creating and/or re-creating your authentic image.

There are certainly basic suggestions to follow for different body types and colors and styles which will enhance your looks, but I have THREE key ways that you can look will  help you determine, create or investigate the image YOU want to project. The styles, silhouettes and fashion must haves come later.

1. YOU’RE NEVER FULLY DRESSED WITHOUT A SMILE!

You can be wearing a CHANEL suit but if you have a dour expression, the person next to you dressed head to toe in Target (one of my favorite places to pick up fun, trendy items) wearing a huge smile will attract the clients to them.  The first thing I recommend putting on when meeting a client, leading a group, heading to the grocery store or doing a downward facing dog in Yoga, is a smile. That is your best accessory. Trite but true. Try it and see!

2. YOUR STYLE ICON IS……

Whose style do you admire?  Oprah, Michelle Obama, your yoga instructor, your mentor, Sarah Jessica Parker?  Why does their image/style/manner of dress appeal to you?  Is it what they wear, or how they wear it?  Are they outlandish, conservative, colorful? Most likely their personality mirrors their style of dress.

For years, way back in the 80’s all of the women who worked at Fashion Magazines dressed head to toe in black. Every day. You know, I have to say that often their expressions matched their funereal garb. I’m not saying black is bad, but to wear it every day, well that certainly doesn’t take any creativity, and really who are you?

Here is a great excuse to go out and buy a few fashion magazines, or gossip publications. Or go online and search…..Go through and tear/cut/print out photos of people whose style you admire. Just as you would an image board if you were hoping to manifest certain things into your life, create a notebook of looks that call out to you. Even if you think you could never wear them due to your coloring, size or amount in your bank account, DO IT.  You may be surprised at the items, hairstyles, colors which draw your eye.

I recommend doing this once a week for a month. After four weeks (or however long you choose to cut and collect) look at your choices and try to incorporate at least one item into your wardrobe. (You needn’t spend a fortune, but that’s another article). I guarantee you will feel fantastic by doing this and your authentic self is on it’s way.

3. TAKE A DEEP BREATH and….

Visualize. As I’m sure all of you know, centering yourself by meditation or yoga, or simply focusing on your breath, does wonders for the soul, the mind and the spirit.

When looking to create, enhance, discover your authentic self, here is a brief meditation that will assist you with the process.  Take a few deep cleansing breaths (I know, I know, I just love saying that).  Get yourself into a meditative state however you choose. When you do, picture a trunk or suitcase. (the image I like is that of an old fashioned steamer trunk). Your chosen type of luggage is locked. Oh dear, oh my. But alas and alack, YOU have the key to open it.

Select the image of a key in your mind, whether it is an old fashioned skeleton key or a diamond encrusted Tiffany Key –  this is the key to unlocking your authentic self.  Take the time to picture yourself unlocking your chosen valise. When you do finally take the key and turn  the lock, gently open the suitcase (or whatever you have selected). From the depths of the case, colors will emerge, Now focus on the colors –  picture them swirling around you, dancing, leaping, frolicking.

As they finally come to rest on your body what is the dominant color and shape that you have created?  Picture yourself speaking to a group of people wearing your new “outfit”.  Does it feel right?  Are you happy and communicating in the way that suits you?

This is your authentic self, waiting to be released into the world.

ENJOY HER!  Do this meditation whenever you feel the urge or need to enhance, embrace or shift your image. YOU KNOW the power of meditation, and this is just one more way to manifest the authentic YOU.

In a few weeks, I’ll be bringing you Fall’s Fun Fashion Finds!

 

Wishing you a fabulously fashionable day.

Kim Selby

 

P.S. Leave us a comment below. As  professional women or women entrepreneurs what challenges have you had in creating your authentic image? We would love to hear from you and as always feel free to share this post with the women in your life.

 

Kim conducts seminars on Awakening the Authentic You, Frugal Fashion, and Casual Friday does not mean Sweats! She also works one on one to help women uncover their authentic style.

Kim can be reached at kimduffselby@gmail.com  On twitter: http://twitter.com/Kimduffselby and FB:https://www.facebook.com/kimduffselby

 

 

photo credit http://www.flickr.com/photos/sunwalk999/6823113582/

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