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The Professionalism of Pink

When I was young, my favourite colour used to be blue.

I know…it’s shocking, right? Considering the amount of pink that I wear and the fact that it’s one of my core brand colours you would think that my love for the colour started from a young age.

Well, believe it or not – I went through a pretty extensive “tomboy” phase. I loved hoodies, basketball jerseys, tracksuits and sneakers and that was my clothing of choice most days. I clearly remember my outfit for my first day of high school – a grey TNA tracksuit from Aritzia and a pair of pink and white Adidas sneakers.

But as you know, high school has a way of really impacting your self-esteem as you try to figure out where you belong. We all want to be accepted by the “cool kids” and of course, have people notice us. I quickly began to change (both literally and figuratively) from a tomboy to someone who embraced their girly side. Thinking back, it sounds so ridiculous but at the time, I felt as though I had no other choice in order to be accepted by my peers.

Fast forward to current day and of course, I’m very comfortable and happy with my personal style but I now find myself with a new dilemma – navigating the “professionalism” of the colour pink.

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How to Wear Yellow

Yellow is probably one of the most neglected colours of the rainbow. I mean, I sort of understand why. It’s bright and it’s loud (maybe even a little intimidating?) but yet that’s exactly why I love it. When you wear yellow, you’re making a statement.

I’ve had a lot of people tell me that yellow isn’t flattering on them. Part of me thinks this is an excuse used to avoid looking like a bumblebee or Big Bird as I personally think it can suit everyone as long as you find the right shade.

Due to my darker complexion, I typically avoid yellow if it is very light or pastel but I absolutely love mustard yellow! The deep undertones in it mix well with my skin and it gives me a nice, natural glow. Whenever I wear mustard yellow, it’s like there’s a sign on my head that says “This girl is friendly!” as I find I have more strangers feel like they can strike up a conversation with me.

{photo credit: Wikipedia}

According to the “fashion experts”, yellow is “in” this season and I know you can’t see me but I’m totally rolling my eyes right now. I’m personally not a fan of waiting for fashion to tell me what colours I should and should not be wearing. I’ve always been a huge fan of yellow. However, since yellow now seems to be everywhere, I thought I’d show you a few ways that you can incorporate it into your wardrobe!

As a Top

{Photographer: Gooseberry Studios}

As a Jacket

As a Coat

statement coat

{Photographer: Daniela Mileto Photography}

As an Accessory

{Photographer: Nancy Asante}

As a Shoe

{Photographer: Gooseberry Studios}

I hope these outfits inspire you to appreciate this beautiful colour. I’m on a mission to encourage people to wear more yellow. If you decide to incorporate yellow into your outfit (in any shape or form!), share your photo on Instagram and tag me @dowelldresswell and use #wearmoreyellow!

How to Fall in Love with Your Entire Wardrobe

Did you know that most people only wear 20% of their wardrobe, 80% of the time? I mean, think about it – we spend all this money to build out our wardrobe yet most of us tend to stick to our ‘tried and true’ pieces.

Does this sound like you? This may be happening for a number of reasons:

1 – You’re in a clothing rut

Deep down, you’re absolutely tired of the clothes in your wardrobe. You feel like you’ve worn everything a million times and you feel like you don’t have any good pieces anymore.

2 – Getting dressed gives you anxiety

You’ve never really spent the time figuring out what pieces and colours look best on you so as soon as you open your closet – you feel instant anxiety. You look around and you have no idea what to put on so you just grab the same ol’ items you wear all.the.time.

3 – Your clothing doesn’t fit your current lifestyle

Do you now work in a corporate environment but all your clothing is casual? Or perhaps the other way around? Maybe you only have a few pieces that are suitable for your everyday life and you haven’t yet spent time building out a wardrobe that’s a reflection of your current lifestyle.

So, how do you get to the place where you love your entire wardrobe again? The place where you open it up and from end to end, you feel good about the options you have and every single one is a potential candidate for today’s outfit?

Conduct a clothing audit

Go through your closet and ask yourself the following questions:

Do I even like this item?

Does it have any rips, tears or stains?

Have I worn this in the last 3 months? 6 months? 1 year?

Does it still fit?

Where can I wear this?

Do you like how this piece looks on you and makes you feel?

Does this item fit your current personal style?

A free printable of the clothing audit has been added to the resource library! Join the list and get the password so you can get your copy:

Shop your existing items

After you have gone through your wardrobe to figure out what you’ll keep, it’s time to shop your own wardrobe! Mix and match pieces that you currently own to rediscover why you bought those items in the first place – after all, there must have been something about it that compelled you to buy it! Play around with various outfit formulas so you can determine how versatile your pieces really are. Here’s one of my favourites. What’s great about it is that it can easily be transformed from an office look to a weekend outing look.

From work…

Black cardigan or blazer + black and white patterned top (polka dots, stripes, etc.) + coloured pants + black pumps (and of course, you can add a necklace to top it off!)

…to weekend!

Black and white patterned top + jeans + cute pair of flats (and of course, if you need an extra layer, you can add the black blazer!)

Don’t buy items just for one particular event

Do you find that you only go shopping when you have an event coming up? You then wear that outfit and it never sees the light of day again? Before you purchase something new, you should ask yourself two questions “Would I wear this outfit again?” and  “What else could I wear this with?” If you know that you would only get one wear out of it (unless it’s your wedding dress, of course), you may want to pass up on it and look for something that you’re get a lot of wear out of.

Stop following fashion trends – define your own style

If you’re diligently following along with new fashion trends, it’s no wonder that you’re tired of your wardrobe – it’s constantly out of style! As soon as a new trend is “in”, let’s face it…after a few months, it’s on to the next thing! So, how do you solve this? By defining your own unique and timeless style. A style that will always be stylish no matter what fashion week says.

You can get started in 2 easy steps:

1 – Create a style moodboard

Set up a board on Pinterest and get to work pinning outfits and clothing items that reflect the style you’re after. You can either set up separate boards for different outfits (i.e. work and weekend) or combine them into one.

2 – Evaluate your inspiration + create your style summary

After you’ve created your moodboard, it’s time to put together your style summary. Here’s mine as an example:

What adjectives would you use to describe your style?

Bright, chic, fun, classy

What do you think this style communicates about you? Is it positive?

Friendliness, happiness, confidence, elegance

What are the key colours of this style?

Pink, yellow, black, navy blue, white, grey

What are the key pieces that make up this style?

Patterned skirts, tailored blazers, striped shirts, coloured cardigans, dark denim jeans, patterned tops

What is a typical outfit formula for this style?

Patterned cardigan, neutral top, statement necklace + jeans

What accessories best complement this style?

Statement earrings and necklaces

What would I name my style?

Statement Chic

Remember, curating a wardrobe you love and look good in doesn’t just happen – it’s an art. It takes thought, time and planning to figure out your unique style and what outfit formulas look best. But once you do, you’ll find that you’ll feel better, look better and it will lead to a huge boost in your overall confidence.

Why You Should Dress Up For A Phone Interview

When contacted by a company for a job opportunity, it’s likely that before you are invited for an in-person interview, you need to complete a phone interview.

Now this may seem pretty easy – you get to sit at home and simply talk on the phone without having to deal with the added stress surrounding an in-person meeting. You know what I mean – it seems much easier since you don’t have to worry about your body language and attire.

The thing is though – what you choose to wear can influence your performance during a phone interview.

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5 Tips to Make Getting Dressed More Productive

Did you know that women spend almost six months (let me repeat – six months!) of their working life deciding what to wear? This breaks down to almost 17 minutes a day or four days a year, going through your wardrobe to select an outfit. Crazy, right?

Reading this statistic at first may seem shocking but think about the last time you were getting ready – you open your closet, stare at your clothes, you may pick something out and try it on but decide it doesn’t work and then try something else. Before long, what seems like it may only take a minute typically becomes 17 minutes! I don’t know about you but I can’t help but think about having an extra 17 minutes of sleep in the morning…

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4 Ways to Incorporate Colour Into Your Winter Wardrobe

It’s about that time of year when I’m absolutely fed up with winter. I’m tired of the layers, gloves and having to throw on a bulky winter jacket on top of every outfit. But hey, if you live in a cold country like I do, adapting to the winter temperatures is simply just a part of life.

But, if you’re as eager as I am to start wearing cute spring outfits, there’s one thing you can do in the meantime – incorporate colour into your winter wardrobe.

Winter can be pretty grey and gloomy and we tend to gravitate towards colours that reflect the weather (and let’s be honest, our mood as well!) but by adding some fun colourful pieces into the season, you’ll find it’s the much-needed boost you need to get through the winter blues.

Here are some items you can try:

The Statement Coat

There’s nothing I love more than a statement coat. It’s an instant head turner and it adds such fun and personality to your outfit. I’ve shared many of my favourite statement coats before but this one from Zara definitely tops my list. I encourage you to gravitate away from your regular black and grey coats and opt for a brighter colour!

statement coat

Prints and patterns

Pair a solid coloured top with a patterned skirt or pair of pants to add some extra colour to your outfit. This outfit formula works throughout any season – just add or remove layers as necessary! Feel like being extra bold? Pair a patterned outfit with a statement coat!

Photographer: Daniela Mileto 

Coloured Tights

Add some fun to a solid black or striped dress by pairing them with a bright pair of tights! I recently picked up a pink pair and I can’t wait to style them throughout the winter and spring. For now, I’m gaining serious inspiration from these looks courtesy of Trina Turk. 

Photo via Trina Turk

Bright and bold accessories

From scarves to necklaces and earrings, there’s no shortage of the type of accessory you can experiment with. You can pair a bright accessory with a neutral outfit or highlight a particular colour in your outfit, like how I highlighted the yellow in this look. 



How To Get in The Habit of Dressing for Success

Think about how you dressed last year or even the year before – have you been dressing for success? I’ve shared before that your style should never remain stagnant. As you evolve in your career and just life in general, your style should grow simultaneously. 

It’s easy to create a resolution at the start of the year such as “I’m going to start dressing better!” but that’s easier said than done. How do you actually start to get into the habit? How does dressing for success or as I like to say “dressing well” start to become so natural to you?”

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5 Style Resolutions You Need to Make this Year

Every time a new year rolls around, we immediately begin planning our personal and professional goals and resolutions for the 365 days ahead of us. But when was the last time you included your personal style in your yearly resolutions?

The growth of your personal style should never remain stagnant. Just like you prioritize elevating your career, your style should grow simultaneously.

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How to Make a Style Statement even with a Corporate Dress Code

I think I have a love/hate relationship with dress codes.

I mean, yes, I completely understand that they are put in place to ensure that our clothing meets a particular standard but a corporate dress code for example (otherwise known as business formal) typically leads to thoughts of neutral colours, plain black suits and simply lack of style.

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve heard, “I wish I could wear that to work but my office is so corporate”. So, you know what happens? They end up wearing boring outfits because they feel as though that’s their only option.

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