Tagged as: work dressing

Not so corporate headshots!

not so corporate headshotsnot so corporate headshots



Having met Lindsay Wakelin  a local Colchester based photographer at a networking event a couple of years ago we decided to set up a joint collaboration whereby she would offer not so corporate head shots for women looking for something a little different for their websites and social media personal profiles.

As part of the not so corporate head shots package I would work with the client to work out what colours and styles they should be wearing ready for the photo shoot ensuring they looked their very best for the photo shoot.

As part of the process of moving forward with this initiative we did a photo shoot where I was the model and tried out a variety of head shots and full body shots wearing clothing that made the most of my colouring and body shape but was a little different from the traditional corporate head and body shots.

The below photo is one of the head shots from the day and is now the head shot on all my social media profiles. It’s clearly me but a little different from a usual head shot  and using a handbag nicely links in with my profession.

not so corporate headshots


Our joint collaboration will allow women to have a head shot taken to show the real and authentic them which is different and better than a traditional corporate head shot.

Lindsay is very experienced, professional and welcoming and immediately puts you at ease before and during the photo shoot.If you have a look at this link to her blog about our collaboration you can see various examples of different head and body shots to give you some inspiration.

As part of the head shot package I am offering a bespoke colour and style analysis service along with outfits compilation. I will come to your house prior to the photo shoot and discuss what colours and style clothing and accessories you should be wearing and why and help you choose some outfits ready for the photo shoot. This will typically take around 1.5 – 2 hours and will include a colour chart, style cheat sheet and several outfits compiled from your own wardrobe to consider for the photo shoot. All this for only £95.

Lindsay can also arrange for you to have your hair and makeup done on the day of the shoot so that combined with your carefully curated outfits you will look and feel photo ready.

In fact the photos don’t even need to be for any particular work reason…why not have some photos ready to mark a special occasion, a big birthday, retirement, change of career, promotion or just because you would like some great professional photos taken of yourself combined with a bit of advice over what clothing suits you best.

A photo shoot could be an amazing experience giving you photos to treasure. Whether you would like not so corporate head shots or full body shots or both Lindsay is more than happy to oblige.


Follow up

For any questions about this blog or to contact me to find out how I could help you dress well call 07500 443974. If you like this blog please share with your friends and/or comment and to get regular updates on  what to buy and how to wear it please like my facebook business page and subscribe to my regular newsletter on my homepage.


What to wear to work…. Smart or casual?!

what to wear to work

So does it matter what you wear to work?

Within the last 20 years work business codes have begun to soften with companies, large and small across the UK , increasingly starting to abandon the traditional suit and tie for men and skirt or trouser suit for women  in favour of something slightly more relaxed. Often people are confused as to what to wear to work as these corporate dress codes are being stripped away.

This trend is mirrored across the globe and has been fuelled in part by the rise of the culture of working from home, having portfolio careers and the tech boom which has seen the billionaire founders of Facebook, Apple and Twitter, to name but a few, turn up to work in jeans and hoodies. The rise of the millennial generation which now comprises 60% of the working population has also been critical in this shift away from corporate dress codes. The job market is increasingly competitive and companies are having to be creative in how they attract the best staff. Many employees, particularly the Millennials, see dressing less formally as a perk.

City financial firm Hymans Robertson has a dress code written in their HR policy which states formal business attire is required but even they do not expect men to wear a tie unless they are seeing clients and they have a dress down day every Friday. US banking giant JP Morgan Chase & Co has now changed its dress policy to business casual clothing.

With this increasing softness of traditional work wear does it therefore matter what you wear? The answer is a resounding yes. When we are dressing for work we are selling ourselves – both internally and externally to colleagues, bosses and current and potential clients. Therefore it is critical that we dress appropriately for what is expected of our industry and in line with the expectations of the client . A solicitor should still be relatively formal, a web designer relatively casual, a stylist quite stylish and a plumber wearing something with a company logo on. One study has shown that 55% of our impact is visual based on our appearance and body language, 38% is our voice and only 7% is our words or what we are actually saying. Subliminally, when people meet us they are assessing us and making a judgement and as the study shows it is critical that the visual appearance is correct…  more important than the content of what we are actually saying. An impression is made in a matter of seconds and is very hard to overturn that initial first impression.  Clothing should also be flattering, up to date and good grooming is critical regardless of industry. A decent hairstyle, trimmed beard, neat nails, polished shoes and no underwear showing are all still very important whatever the job you are doing and the sector you are in.

Follow up

For any questions about this blog or to contact me to find out how I could help you dress well call 07500 443974. If you like this blog please share with your friends and/or comment and to get regular updates on  what to buy and how to wear it please like my facebook business page and subscribe to my regular newsletter on my homepage.

Time to ditch the dark suit!

amalI recently gave a talk to one of the networking groups I belong to on the topic of dressing for success or in other words how to present yourself to your best effect when at work. One comment that kept coming up was how difficult it is to buy suits if you were very short or very tall or plus size….. This set me to thinking about why we as women often feel that we have to wear a (often dark) suit to be taken seriously in the workplace?

I’m a firm believer that in 2015 there is no need to wear suits to present yourself with authority and confidence and to look capable of doing the job you are employed to do, or run the business you have set up yourself.  The key thing to looking good whilst dressing for work is to look groomed, elegant and confident. This is easily achieved without having to don a suit – after all we are women so why should we be attempting to dress like a man does to be taken seriously?

The poster child of chic and sophisticated but always appropriate work dressing is Amal Clooney. A human rights lawyer based in London but travelling all over the world for her job – she always looks stylish, elegant and polished and very rarely wears a standard two piece suit, let alone a black or grey one. She’s a big fan of shift dresses and heels or trousers and top and flats always paired with a statement bag and gorgeous shoes, glossy blow dry and bright lips. She looks professional, in control, stylish and feminine. How could wearing a dark two piece suit improve on this?

Too often, women tell me they feel like they must wear a dark suit when dealing with men at i.e. a conference or seminar or networking event where men will be in the majority, and that if they don’t they will not be taken seriously. I understand a lot of women see putting on the dark suit and getting work ready like putting on a uniform and mentally being in work mode, but have they considered that a dark suit makes them often look frumpy and tired and unapproachable…. the last thing you want to wear if trying to network or build relationships with potential customers?

In terms of wearing suits, for both sexes the corporate world has definitely softened and women in particular should revel in all the the different options we have to wear for work that men mostly definitely don’t have… dress and cardy, trousers and shirt, trousers and cropped jacket, jumpsuit and jacket, knee length dress, midi length dress, flats, heels, sandals, a killer bag… The list is endless and as long as we are wearing what suits us in terms of colouring and body shape and look appropriate for the job we are doing and look current and groomed we can’t really go wrong. So ladies go and throw off  that black suit and ditch the grey trousers, embrace your femininity and have some fun with your work wardrobe.

A quick checklist of what to have in your wardrobe to look gorgeous, feminine and more than able to do your job would be:

  • Shift dresses (no shorter than 3cms above the kneecap)
  • Cropped cardys
  • Heeled court shoes in a neutral colour ie black, navy, tan, cream, white, camel
  • A statement bag in a neutral colour  ie black, navy, tan, cream, white, camel
  • Cropped jackets that will co-ordinate with shift dresses, trousers, shirts and tops
  • Lots of accessories in a rainbow of colours to lift even the simplest shift dress i.e scarves, costume necklaces and bracelets and to help change your look on a daily basis



For any questions about this blog or to contact me to find out how I could revolutionize your work wardrobe please call 07500 443974. If you like this blog please share with your friends and/or comment and to get regular updates on  what to buy and how to wear it please like my facebook page.

Wow Factor Hits its Stride

Way back in April, I wrote about the charity Wow Factor which launched in March 2014 in Colchester and aims to help vulnerable women back to work, by equiping them with an interview ready outfit to help the secure a job and move on with their lives.
The charity has now started to get a steady trickle of clients through from our referring partners and this weekend I will be conducting training to the trustees and volunteer dressers in the principles of dressing women based on their colouring, body shape and style preference.  This will take place at our temporary base, Kingsland church in Lexden and will help the dressers to make the women look and feel fantastic as they will in future be able to chose outfits that will make the best of the ladies colouring, shape and natural style. Going forward, the 3 outfits they are provided with, once they have secured a job, will form a mini capsule wardrobe so that they can make a number of outfits from the 3 base outfits supplied and should keep them looking work ready for a number of weeks until they can afford to buy additional items when they get their 1st pay packet.
We are still absolutely on the look out for both donations of clothing  and volunteers to work as dressers and mentors/coaches.  Any advice on grants available to help us pay for a permanent base would also be very useful.
For further information please contact me directly or email wowfactorglobal@gmail.com.