For years I used to struggle with self confidence. This has always come as a surprise to those around me as I always appeared to be very confident. I could be at an event and although I wasn’t the life and soul of the party, I was pretty confident walking into a room without knowing anyone there. No one knew how I left my bedroom floor because of the numerous outfit changes I had before I arrived!
Growing up, I was often compared to family members or friends. I was never really encouraged to be myself. The one thing I was confident about was my appearance and style. I had a strong influence growing up with a Father as a Bespoke Tailor who was always dressed in a tailored suit, shirt and tie (he’s never worn jeans!).
My first Saturday job was in his ladieswear shop in Clapham Junction, London, ‘La Couture’. Looking back I hated it! But I think that was because I was working for my dad who was a strong disciplinarian back then so it was more like a chore than a job. I enjoyed interacting with customers that came in and watching the ladies choose their items. My dad would let me choose something to take home every week which was nice. I was probably the first girl at school to wear shoulder pads!
Whilst I’ve always been confident in my choice of outfit, unfortunately I would often hear remarks such as “where are you going” or “Is there an after party I don’t know about?” I like to dress up! I like to look elegant and stylish, but even when I would hear those remarks I always knew I looked good but I wasn't feeling myself. This resulted in me sometimes dumbing down an outfit so that I would blend in with others to take the spotlight off myself.
When you appear confident to those around you, people assume that you have your shit together and everything is ok. It wasn’t always ok but as Elizabeth Taylor says, “Pour yourself a drink, put on some lipstick and pull yourself together.” You see, my clothes gave me confidence. Even now.
Have you ever looked at someone and admired their confidence? How they seem to have their life together, have an amazing social life and can wear anything and look good? Do you know that the clothes you wear can have the same magical powers? They can. When was the last time you saw a woman in a bright yellow top and thought to yourself “I could never wear that but she can” or “she's brave.” How do you know she doesn’t have the same insecurities that we all face at some point? She could also have thought that she wasn’t confident enough to wear it before she actually did.
I have a passion for fashion and style and it has been my mission since becoming a Personal Stylist to help more women feel comfortable and confident in their clothes. Nothing lights me up more than seeing a woman try on something I have suggested that they would never have chosen for themselves. The colour, the style, the way it contours their shape and the twinkle in their eye! I just love it! Women I have styled have a new found confidence just from choosing a few key items that reflect their style and personality.
My confidence has increased over the years and I no longer choose to surround myself with others that try and knock it! I realised that their criticism of me and my clothing was a reflection of themselves and that’s ok. I want to encourage women to feel the same. Be yourself and know your worth.
Do you have any clothes that you haven’t worn or never bought because you don’t feel confident enough to wear them? How do your clothes make you feel?
I’d love to know!
A Style Coach & Image Consultant.