When it comes to getting dressed for work, be strategic and invest in staple items that make the most impact when you walk into a room.
One of the most popular questions my clients ask at this time of year is "What are the top trends for fall?" There are so many to choose from (neon, animal print, mini skirts, leather), a person can get easily overwhelmed.
1. A statement coat.
As you begin to build your fall capsule wardrobe, make sure to include outerwear in your budget. Many often think of a coat as an afterthought but the reality is that when the weather is cool, nothing can embolden your presence like a powerful coat.
Whether you're walking into a meeting or traveling with colleagues, this garment is often the first one noticed and can have a significant impact on your image.
Depending on the weather, a well-tailored trench coat or an edgy cape can take you through three seasons. In menswear, look for a slightly fitted, knee length coat style that easily layers over a sweater or suit. For the ladies, statement coats this season are bold, ranging from faux fur to fleece and oversized styles in bright colors.
2. A practical, but personal bag.
Your handbag or briefcase is an extension of your look and personal brand. Inside this arsenal, you hold a wealth of information and packaging matters. You've invested in cultivating a successful presence at the office so choose a handbag, tote or computer bag that reflects your leadership style.
Don't overlook this organizational style tool. Be functional and stylish in a commuter's backpack or invest in your favorite designer's new "it" bag. Look for something slim and sleek that echoes your modern style or find a shape that flatters your body type. Bags have expiration dates. If you're wondering if it's time for you to invest in a new one, look for wear and tear along the straps and around the edges.
3. Shoes that will last through the season.
Shoes are a great form of creative expression and can often be an ice breaker in new situations. They are an exclamation point to any ensemble and can help you stand out from the crowd. Be bold in animal print, get noticed in a powerful color or be understated and sophisticated in Italian leather.
Boots are the most popular shoes my clients enjoy shopping for in the fall. Guys like to amp up their style factor by pairing a dressy boot with a suit while my female clients are on the hunt for the perfectly versatile ankle bootie. One of the most interesting trends in business casual footwear is the hybrid shoe. The design of this shoe can reflect business (leather or sleek styling) while the comfort and function of the sole is perfect for long days (colorful and rubber).
My clients are hard on their shoes and rarely notice peeling leather or worn soles. Your shoes tell a story -- don't let it be one that indicates you are as tired as your shoes.
Shopping for coats, bags, and shoes is easy retail therapy because you never have to undress. Before you head online or to the stores, shop your closet and identify gaps in your wardrobe. Invest time and make room in your budget to create that wow factor when you walk into a room.