To me professionalism is the way you carry yourself it is not always measured by the way you dress. If you are authentic to who you are , confident, and know what message you want to convey to others around you; how you dress can be a very powerful tool.
In the professional world casual work attire is becoming more acceptable and in my industry there can be many grey areas. These grey areas allow us to build our own brand and create attention around our look. They can create a very interesting opportunity to express ourselves and be noticed when used properly. Grey areas can become negative when we lack the understanding of what we wear and the message it sends to those around us.
No ripped jeans and a baggy t-shirt do not convey the message of professionalism when thrown on. However when paired with an interesting jacket and accessories this look goes from a day off to polished. Be confident the the message you send others, how people perceive you is based on how you see yourself. Whatever you choose to express ensure that it is the best version of yourself.
When I dress myself I like to play dress up. I think about my mood, what message I want to share, and how much I truly want to stand out in a crowd. For me what I wear is completely mood based and changes daily. I understand now through experimenting what I feel good in, what helps me feel confident and what is appropriate based on the event I'm attending.
I urge you to experiment on your days off. Notice based on what you wear what kind of attention you receive. When we know ourselves, body type and how others react to us we can have power in fashion.
Living in Okotoks there are many artistic and fashion forward individuals who own stores and can help guide you if you tend to get lost in the array of styles out there. I visited three of my favourite stores within the Foothills to help showcase looks that can be versatile and used at home or within my workplace(salon).
Mint and Maple:
I love visiting the little green house on Elma street in Okotoks. They carry a wide variety of patterns, tops, dresses and bags to choose from in this store. The Owner Natalie creates a warm and inviting atmosphere to shop in which is a perfect place to experiment and get some advice. We created together a look that sends a message of professionalism but with some artistic flair. We chose interesting and bold patterns to create more playfulness within these looks. Don't be afraid to be BOLD
Rhoda's Elegance Again
Rhoda's is a consignment store on Elisabeth Street in Okotoks. I love consignment as it's all about "the find" for me. They carry so much selection and I seem to always find a great pair of boots there. It's definitely my go to when I'm on a budget or want to browse while not breaking the bank. I wanted to prove that second hand can be professional and that you do not always need new items to look current. Rhoda's and I worked together to create some looks that I think have a very polished and professional feel. I'm also very happy to say that each look was no more then a $100.00! If you do not know how consignment works I suggest your check it out ASAP!
Pixie Hollow is located on 1st Street SW in High River. I love going there to look at the one of a kind pieces she has as well as her books(Yes, I am a book worm). Their slogan is Books, Clothing and Lovely things. That only begins to explain the unique experience they create. If you go into Calgary to Shop at Anthropologie I'd suggest you stop at Pixie Hollow first. You will not be disappointed. We worked together to create a unique look that could go to the cabin or workplace. Having a couple of high quality pieces in a wardrobe are a must when it comes to looking professional. Both of us wanted to show you this with these unique pieces from France and Amsterdam. It only takes one piece to "wake up" an old wardrobe. Let Pixie Hollow be your place to wander, explore and create a look with some high quality investment pieces.
As you can see each store has their unique flair and approach to fashion. I love shopping at all different types of stores to have an assortment of original looks that make me feel unique and one of a kind. I hope this encourages you to shop local and experiment with your style.
A huge thank you to the stores and photographer Karen Chernecki that allowed this blog post to happen!
I strongly believe in working with others who are like minded within my community to help growth, awareness and create a conscious community. All of us have something special to offer and I hope this blog inspires you to explore your uniqueness and utilize the power of fashion.
"Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself"-Coco Chanel