What are you “saying” before you speak a word?

Is looking stressed and unprofessional taking away your personal power and positive professional impact?  Appearing rumpled or haggard downgrades your professional image.

Portraying a harried image – regardless of how well you do your job or how smart you are, places you at risk of damaging your professional reputation, of hitting a wall in your career, of not making the most of your pitch to potential clients. Continue reading

Donate a bag – give a child an education

It is said that we wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time! That means that we have an awful lot of clothes in our wardrobes which rarely see the light of day.  My experience in working with clients in wardrobe weeding sessions that this is true and it also applies to accessories! In particular, I find that women often have lots of handbags and belts that they rarely if ever use.  Perhaps they bought on impulse, were given a gift of a ‘good’ bag or simply the bag is the wrong shape, wrong colour, too big/small etc! 

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Get More Life Out Of Your Clothes

  • Launder less frequently if at all possible – washing and drying clothes frequently shortens their lifespan due to the heat and the friction involved in washing. Try wearing clothes multiple times between launderings.
  • Use a non-biological powder which is kinder to fabrics – and to your skin. Avoid fabric conditioner – they are usually full of chemicals. Always check the label for washing instructions.
  • Wash clothes on a cooler cycle in the washing machine – perhaps 30° – kinder to your clothes and saves energy too!
  • Line dry your clothes as opposed to putting them in the tumble dryer.
  • Always turn dark clothes inside out when machine washing and this will preserve the colour longer.
  • Zip up any garments as the teeth of the zip can cause damage to fabrics in the washing machine. The same applies to Velcro fasteners.
  • Check garments frequently for wear and tear – i.e. hems, buttons etc., and repair anything that’s needed.
  • Never put anything back into the wardrobe after wearing without checking for stains or any signs of wear and tear.
  • If you are wearing suits regularly, consider having them pressed as opposed to dry cleaned unless they really need it.
  • Storing your clothes in an organised way will ensure that you get the most life out of your wardrobe. Invest in good hangers, particularly for suits and jackets. Store non-hanging items flat and folded – this avoids the crumpled look or having to iron before wearing.
  • 10 Secrets of a Great Handshake

    The handshake is the most important professional greeting in business today. It is something most of us do often, particularly in business. We shake hands.   We shake hands with long-time friend, old acquaintances and with new clients and colleagues.

    The handshake is a part of the first impression we make. Together with the first impression we make with our appearance, body language and grooming, it is the handshake that is the first point of physical contact.

     wet fish handshake

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    Emerald – the new black?

    Pantone, the world-renowned authority for colour as a standard language for communication, has declared EMERALD as their 2013 colour.  Emerald is a universal colour which means that it is a colour that suits all colourings, whether you are a pale blond or a dark brunette. Expect to see a lot of this colour on the catwalks and on the high street for Spring Summer 2013!  Find out how to to wear your emerald for next season!


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    Stuck in a rut? 7 tips for injecting new life into your wardrobe

    Just last week, we had our first client of 2013 in studio. A young man, keen to get him self out of the rut of buying the same colours, labels, styles etc. He was keen to get more mileage out of his budget and was feeling a bit bored with his look. This is a very typical trait of what is termed a classic style personality and is not uncommon in both men and women.

    You will know if you are a classic stye personality if typically:

    • You find yourself with a lot of the same type of clothes in your wardrobe in terms of colours, styles;
    • You have bought a garment in the past only to come home and find something identical in your wardrobe;
    • You find it difficult to mix and match – you typically just mix and match the same few items in your wardrobe;
    • You tend to play it safe when shopping; You go for the same colours – usual neutral colours such as black, navy, grey, white;
    • You find it more difficult to shop for your non-work wardrobe i.e you casual/smart casual wardrobe.

    So, how to inject some new life and fun into your wardrobe. This involves pushing yourself a little bit outside of your comfort zone, but there is never a better time than January for doing something like this. Here are our top tips!

    1. Colour is a great way to add new life into your style. Next time you are shopping, try on some colours that you might not have considered in the past. Small steps here – it may be just a scarf, a handbag, a top. Because you have lots of neutral colours (black, grey, navy, brown) in your existing wardrobe, a new ‘accent’ colour (reds, blues, greens, etc) will liven up your wardrobe.
    2. Take a little time to browse magazines or the net and decide on looks, styles and colours that appeal to you and make a mental note.
    3. For the ladies, add some costume jewellery in some new colours.  It doesn’t have to cost a fortune, but it will add a new dimension to your look.
    4. For the guys, it may be some new ties which will instantly update a suit and give a fresh look.
    5. If you have always worn black shoes or boots, try on some new colours – there will be plenty of new options particularly coming into the Spring.
    6. Avoid the tendency to buy more work gear! Focus on your ‘outside work’ wardrobe. If they appeal to you but you don’t have a great pair of jeans, now is the time to invest. Alternatively a chino type trouser or casual trousers will be a great addition to your wardrobe.
    7. Visit new shops. Avoid any shops, labels or styles that you have opted for in the past. This is a learning exercise, if you come home with no purchases, don’t worry. Your overall aim is to avoid the samey samey approach that you’ve had up to now.

    Its time to inject some fun and interest into your look. It won’t happen overnight, but you will have fun in the process. Don’t be too hard on yoursel.  Alternatively, check out   http://imagematters.ie/personal