What colours to wear when travelling for business accross the world

Colours accross the world – what to wear when travelling for business?

Take a moment when you are dressing for work to consider the colour/s you put on and what image that portrays. You may need the boost of confidence from wearing your favourite red dress and you want to project a bold image to the world.

We don’t all interpret colours in the same way. When travelling accross the world it is worth keeping in mind the key colours to avoid or wear for particular occassions.

For instance, traditionally South Africa red is a colour of mourning and in Thailand it is to be worn on Sundays. This website lists some cultural colour meanings and as they say these are traditional meanings but things change in cultures and it is worth doing some research if you are going on a business trip.

Take a look at this colour wheel that shows the various colours and the meanings of colours accross culturescolour cultures wheel

Click here to go to the interactive wheel of colours, meanings and cultures

Networking – Ladies, do you do it?

Networking events – If you aren’t at them then you are missing out.

Sure, I’ve been to a few duds. But more often than not, I have met some very interesting people and formed some good connections. They are opportunities to help one another forward our lives, business and career. This could be in the form of joint ventures, creating opportunities for talking at events or recommending a mentor for you.

  • Don’t think of it in direct correlation of networking = sales if you are in business.
  • Do offer something you can do for the other person when you make a connection. We all have something to offer – it is a two way connection.

A Selection of Women’s Networking Groups:

The Athena Network

Every Woman

Prowess

National Womens Network

We Are The City

Leading Women UK

WIBN SSW

Lady Val

Women in the City

City Women

The Room Upstairs

GWN

Girl Geek Dinners

City Mothers

This list is by no means exhaustive. There are a lot of groups out there who do different meetups, networking and workshops. Hopefully this list will get you started.

One Task A Day

2015 began at full speed for me in the studio. I’ve already begun to get annoyed at myself for not achieving enough. Learning my lesson from 2014 (another story for another time that involves a painful wound on my leg!) I am going to quickly nip this in the bud. So I am now breaking down my list of objectives, goals and ‘to dos’ into one daily task and so far it is working!

One achievable task a day keeps the stress away!!

The one job a days builds towards the one job target for the week and this in turn builds towards an achievable monthly goal.

For instance it could be like this;

Month Goal: Have a new location page on the website

A Week Goal: Have the pictures for the new location page

Day One Day Goal: Get inspiration and make a decision about what kind of pictures I want

Day Two Goal: Decide how and where these pictures are coming from. Do I need to arrange a photoshoot? Can I buy some from a photographer that will work well? Do I have appropriate ones already I can re-use?

Day Three Goal: Start actioning from day two’s decisions. I.e. Book in a photoshoot. Find the pictures already have and or find some pictures online I want to buy.

Day Four Goal: Take the pictures or make sure the pictures are edited and ready to go.

Have one goal a day
Have one goal a day

You may do lots of other things too. There is always something else to do as well (especially when you run your own business)! BUT if you achieve one thing that you can tick off and know that it helps to hit the target goal, it gives a warm sense of satisfaction.

Although I am now using this in my business/professional world, it is a technique I have been using in my personal life too. I.e. Today I need to book a haircut – that is the one thing I need to achieve today. An easy and manageable task in the grand scheme of a busy schedule.

Do you have a technique that you use to help achieve goals?

Styling a Navy Dress

Styling a Navy Dress

Navy is a great alternative to black. If want to add colour to your wardrobe, navy pretty much goes with any colour. Styling a navy wrap dress for work and professional environments and situations is easy to do. In the picture above I have added a small selection of accessories and colours to give you some ideas. But there are really endless choices opportunities to personalise and style your working professional wardrobe.

Navy itself is very flattering on most skin tones. For more mature skin tones you will find navy a perfect alternative to black. The depth of colour won’t wash you out.

Colour choices:

1. I have chosen a burgundy red. Using this deeper darker red takes the colour pallet into more Autumn winter. Brighter lighter reds work equally well with navy.

In this style selection I have added gold as my metal of choice. This golden tone works nicely against navy and burgundy red.

2. Navy and grey are a lovely combination. As I would class them both as neutral colours, having them both in an outfit will give you a very smart, corporate and calm look. Make sure you go for the grey that works for you. Some people suit a pale grey and others a darker shade. There are so many greys out there and some tend to be bluer and others greener. Wearing silver jewellery works well with a navy and grey combination. The reflective nature of silver lifts and lightens an outfit.

3. Cream or white with navy are a classic, sophisticated and summery combination. Here I have picked a pearl necklace as my jewellery of choice – always professional and sophisticated. If white is too harsh against your skin tone try other colours like ivory, cream or blush. Keep it business like by avoiding any sailor references!

4. Yellow might not be your cup of tea but it can look really nice next to navy. If a whole yellow dress is too much, picking out and highlighting with yellow in an outfit can be a more subtle and professional way to go about it. In the picture I have selected a lemon yellow shade but yellow in any shade works very well next to navy. If you prefer a mustard, go with mustard.

For more help on understanding colour and colour matching

Accessory style and shape choices:

Jackets and cardigans

When you are dressing for work you can either go for a jacket or a cardigan. Depending on what your dress code is at work or what your position is you will pick one or the other.

Both cardigans and jackets can work over a wrap dress like the one in the picture. To choose a coverup you need to first think about the lines and shapes of the dress. The navy wrap dress in the picture has a high waist line. In my selection 1 I have chosen a short burgundy cardigan which picks up on the line of the dress. Again in selection 4 I have selected a short lemon jacket which will sit just above the waistline.

The longer jackets in selection 2 and 3 I have chosen because their necklines do not conflict with the neckline of the dress. The dress has a v-shape neckline due to its wrap over style and the grey jacket reflects the v-shape neckline. The cream jacket on the other hand is a high round neck that will completely cover the neckline of the dress.

All of the jackets I have selected have long sleeves in common. The dress has mid-length sleeves and so your cover-up piece (cardigan or jacket) will need to have longer sleeves. This will mean your outfit continues to look smart and professional yet keep any air-conditioning chill off!

Jewellery

The jewellery I have selected all keep in mind the v-shape neckline of the dress. They all hang vertically down the chest area, creating the illusion of more body length/height (this tip works well for shorter stockier ladies).

The biggest necklace I chose was a pearl v-shaped collar type. Although bigger it is not too showy. Although jewellery is a great area to add personality to an outfit we need to be careful not to step outside the professional/work guidelines or unspoken dress codes!

A general guideline for necklaces is: the bigger and bolder the necklace is, the simpler and understated the outfit should be.

If your not sure whether you have too much jewellery on: just stick to one thing in one area i.e.

Go for earrings or a necklace. Wear bracelets or a bold ring.

And as Chanel said “when accessorising always take off the last thing you put on”

 Featured clothing:

Weekend Max Mara red top
matchesfashion.com

Miss Selfridge jacket
missselfridge.com

Altuzarra grey blazer
$1,475 – harveynichols.com

Isabel Marant wool jacket
matchesfashion.com

Jimmy Choo yellow pumps
$845 – profilefashion.com

L.K.Bennett suede pumps
$360 – lkbennett.com

Gianvito Rossi pumps
matchesfashion.com

Rosantica chain necklace
matchesfashion.com

Sterling silver necklace
daysjewelers.com

Chloé pendant jewelry
$740 – selfridges.com

Great Portland
$205 – knomobags.com

Dressing Fear

So you may have seen a few tweets of mine yesterday, showing a lot of excitement about working through a fear of mine.
I made the decision to go for it – work through my fear. To help myself get through it I decided to put on a smart business outfit, makeup and jewellery. It sounds silly but I find this very helpful.
Changing the way you dress changes the way you feel. By creating an outer facade I find gives confidence within.
Even if no one sees, for instance; my fear was making a tough phone call – it’s all about adjusting (or tricking) the mind.

I found it interesting how dramatically I felt different. I’m not thinking it would work for a fear of flying or snakes but…. a fear of speaking in public, presenting your research to the boss or when starting a new job – this could assist you.

Do you find dressing ‘up’ helps your confidence to do things you are scared of?

 

Packing for Travel – Light!

So you have your special travel drawer organised and packed to the brim.
What should you pack and how?
The Basics:

  • For short business trips pack items that can all mix and match
  • Pack in outfits
  • Don’t pack things you wouldn’t wear normally

The Basic Items List:
• Nude lingerie set
• One day bag
• One evening bag
• One pair of nude or black heels
• One pair of neutral flats
• Your best dress
I find I pack the best in outfits. I pick out key pieces that I want to wear on the trip, whether I’m on a business trip or holiday.
I like to think about my trip’s itinerary and pick my outfits accordingly. That sounds obvious, I know, but be quite specific. Will you be walking a lot from location to location or will you be getting taxis? Is there the potential for some high-end meals out or will you be chilling in your hotel room?
So keeping that all in mind I start to pick a key item for each ‘event’ on the itinerary.
For example: My Three day Trip to Paris itinerary (part business / part pleasure!)
Day 1:
Travel to St Pancras get the train to Paris
Arrive, drop bag off at hotel and go to an exhibition
Eve: meal and drinks out

Day 2:
Go to fabric exhibition all day
Eve: meal and drinks out

Day 3:
Go to shops
Catch train home

The dress in the middle of the outfit building below is what I wore for business day two. This was how I then built up the wardrobe for the three days.

Travel light

Morning tea – Grey and black

It’s a little early in the morning for pictures. You can see how thrilled I looked! Morning cup of tea to get the grey cells going and my studio assistant has already got the camera out!! But here I am dressed in my black Missy dress, accessorised with a grey lace jacket. The jacket looks good flying loose but I have added a grey belt to nip in at the waist. The volume of the jacket works well over the fitted dress.

pic 4Close up 2

I’ve also pic 2added one key accessory – the grey/silver bracelet.

Black and grey are a great work combination. Have a go at mixing your work wardrobe up – you might have a grey suit jacket that would look great over a black dress?

Try these out:

monochrome refilia tweed jacket by IRO

compact textured wool double breasted jacket by Neil Barrett

Like the jacket I am wearing, this cardigan has a waterfall effect at the front. You could wear it loose or add a belt:

heather grey voltage rib draped front jersey jacket by HELMUT

pursue jondi tweed peplum jacket by Theory

Pearls On Hair Up; Put The Kettle On

boil water 3boil water 2boil water

I wore the pearls again, over the Ava dress this time. I think having a dramatic statement neck piece works well with this dress.

You can see I was wearing my hair pulled back. When you are wearing a statement neck piece (and/or high neck outfit) you can elongate your neck and show off your statement piece by wearing your hair up.

Try some different ways to keep your long hair up in a chic style low at the back of your head. There are some very chic looks out there to keep your professional look fresh if you find you’re always wearing your long hair loose!

Ladies with short hair do not need to worry about this! Perhaps you can be inspired by these ladies with shorter hair if you’re feeling a little stuck in a hair rut!:

 

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