Up until December 2013, I worked for a Fashion/Retail company that represented a variety of brands along with their own, for the last 6 years. The workplace was extremely free when it came to “personal style”. Professional attire was always “asked” of us but it was a “look your best” guideline and as such, open to many different interpretations. There was fur, leather, heels, flats, and any and every kind of fabulosity.
Well, I recently switched to working for a retailer in a more exciting role with major growth opportunity. Now, I work for one specific vendor. During orientation they let us know that style was a HUGE part of their brand and they expect you to look like their brand. We must have spent 4 hours on the subject of style, what it means to you, words that describe your personal style and what you representing the brand means to them. (Not too long ago I was having a convo with a girlfriend /stylist about personal style and I said “I’m a person, I have style. That’s really the only box I’m in!” LOL)
I’ve shared during my vision board post how in 2013 I committed to elevating my style and leaving the house polished everyday. I can confidently say it was my prettiest year ever. I fell in love with Wayf & DVF’s cool polished glamour. I already owned close to 50 dresses and that collection grew. I added leather skirts, matching sets aka Phillip Lim for Target, and a laser cut BCBG dress that I live for. I realized I hate wearing cardigans, can tolerate slim thin fabric blazers, and I feel most like me when I’m dressed up, showing some leg (even if those legs are in tights). Polished Glamour.
My new job? Casual, layered & cool. She wears sweaters with button downs and relaxed jeans. Dresses that remind me of Kate Spade.Very J. Crew, chambray shirt, all-americana. Not my current aesthetic but everyday I try to add a bit of my brand’s element into my styling. I roll my sleeves, add a blush so I look fresh faced and keep my hair simple yet polished.
Well… this weekend I wore the BCBG leather dress… and then when faced, this morning, with a “get down and dirty day” I chose leather TOPSHOP leggings and a python print tunic cinched with a skinny belt adorned with gold skulls.
Ever do something wrong and you’re waiting for your parents to discuss it with you? Just waiting. Nervously, but trying to be cool? That was me all day. I knew it. Knew as soon as I saw my boss’ face. She asked if I would be free to speak to her at 2:45. (Sidenote: I’ve held numerous management positions and the position I hold now is also management. Anytime you have to speak to an employee about a subject that is less than pleasant, you choose one of two times. Before they go home or before their break. Gives them time to recoup. So I KNEW what was coming)
So my conversation went something like this:
LaToya we love you. We think you are so cute.
Its my outfit right? I knew it. The leather leggings. I’m really sorry I just thought for my dirty visual day… I’m too casual.
No you look amazing! Super polished, very cute. You look like a walking Zara ad!
(This is the BEST compliment I’ve ever received)
OMG Thank You! I was so worried…
Umm, you see the problem is you don’t work for Zara or H&M. You work for **** and we expect you to look like us. Our style.
OH. (*redface*) LMAO (Ever think you are getting a compliment, only to not be getting a compliment? Yes. I had that feeling)
Yup. Knew it was coming. Time to re-invent my personal style. So challenging, anxiety inducing, and exciting all at once.
Like falling in love, its going to be a very delicate balance of becoming someone new, someone I need to become, all while still being & holding on to myself.
I do have legit questions… like how does a busty girl effectively wear a button down? Safety pins, I learned. Also my brand? 2014 Spring is showing a chambray short suit!! Looking up already… 🙂