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business dress code

3 steps to the perfect print

3 steps to the perfect print

Summer is the perfect time to wear and experiment with print. But a lot of my clients find print challenging to wear because they don't know what prints suit them, they feel overwhelmed by print or they don't want to stand out for the wrong reasons. So how to find the prefect print for you? Follow my 3 easy steps and you will be enjoying the interest and beauty that print brings to your wardrobe. 

1. SIZE - you want the size of the print to match your scale. That is, if you are petite and fine boned you want to opt for small prints. Anything larger will overwhelm you. If you are tall and athletic then you want a medium to large size print. Anything too small will look dull and can make you appear bigger than you are. If you are shorter but a size 18 plus then opt for larger prints that add interest and disguise problem areas. 

2. SHAPE - the shape of the print should compliment your shape of your body but also the shape of your facial features. If your body is more boyish and straight or if you have angular facial features and high cheek bones then geometric or stripes work well. If your body is more contoured or your facial features are more rounded then circular, abstract or floral will be complimentary. 

3. COLOUR - opt for a print combination in your perfect colour palette and you can't go wrong. If you have warm colouring then cream, orange, blue and green work well. If you have cool colouring then pink, grey, white, burgundy and blue look stunning. Understanding your colouring opens you up to so many new and exciting colour combinations and takes the guess work out of choosing the right print. If you are confused about your colouring and would like clarity on making the best colour choices for you, then I would love to hear from you. My previous post on why colour matters is a must read for anyone who is still on the fence. 

PRINT IN THE WORKPLACE - If you work in a conservative office then block colours may be preferable but introducing print in the summer months is a great way to add interest.  Opt for monochrome ie two colours in your print for example black and white, navy and cream, burgundy and navy. It is also worth noting here that print decreases the authority of a look and is more approachable. Depending on what your role is then incorporate print when appropriate. 

WHERE TO SHOP - The Scottish designer Jonathan Saunders is the king of print and pattern and has transformed DVF's print offering. Here are my favourites...

Workwear - this blouse is perfect for the office or a night out with a bright pencil skirt. 

Weekend - Wear this to a picnic or pub lunch.  A simple white t shirt will let the print take centre stage. Wearing print away from your face is the perfect way to dip your toe in without it feeling overwhelming. 

Wedding - well it is the season! This Chinese vintage inspired print is heavenly and in a flattering wrap dress style. 

Everyday - the print doesn't have to be dominating. You could wear this everyday - subtle but statement all in the same breath. 

I also love Rixo, La Double J and Doên for original prints and patterns. 

ON THE HIGHSTREET - I'm always on the look out for amazing prints on the hight street. The best places are & Other Stories, Warehouse, Topshop and Finery.  

I would love to help you take the guess work out of finding your perfect print so please get in touch

Penny Bennett is a Personal Stylist and Shopper who works with successful men and women in London and the U.K. 

Image Impact. What it is and how to get it.

Image Impact. What it is and how to get it.

One of my favourite quotes on personal branding is from Jeff Bezos CEO and founder of Amazon “Your brand is what other people say about you when you are not in the room”. Your personal brand is what makes you unique and authentic. But are you standing out for the right reasons? 

A few weeks ago I was asked to comment on the national radio station, TALK radio, about Boris Johnson’s image and his controversial new hair cut (you can listen below). When Boris was running for London Mayor, his mad, feathery blonde hair made him standout out and even helped him to appear more approachable. But now that he finds himself in the formidable role of Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, representing the UK in all foreign matters, is his personal brand representative of his gravitas and effectively communicating his sense of quality and professionalism, or does it just say ‘cultivated chaos’?

What impression are you making on people with whom you meet and work every day? We are all really busy and we rely on instant information - you have made an impression on someone before you utter a word. So look the part. Be dressed in what is appropriate for your profession and the environment you are in whether it be a formal meeting, a networking lunch or client pitch. 

Maybe, like Boris you find yourself in a more senior role within your company but you want to dress with more impact and to influence people or maybe you recognise some of these scenarios below...

You have been in your current position for too long whilst other people are being promoted around you. You feel stymied in your career. 

Ask yourself - is your personal brand representative of your career objectives, future goals and what you're capable of being? 

Top Tip - People grow and evolve and so should you style. If your current look isn’t working for you, you are sending the wrong messages to your colleagues. You need to look as fresh as your ideas, updating your look communicates that you are current, up to date and that you have your finger on the pulse of what your company and clients need. 

You are very good at your job and your position in your company reflects that. But when it comes to socialising and networking outside of work you feel completely out of your depth and it shows!

Ask yourself - how effectively do you network? Do you come across as approachable and engaging or do you struggle to keep peoples attention. 

Top Tip - colour psychology plays a significant part here. Avoid intimidating high contrast combinations that keep you in work mode and opt for lighter more approachable colours. Your clothes can be a great talking point, - an interesting pocket square or a great piece of jewellery can be a conversation starter. 

If you relate to any of these scenarios stop putting your image to the bottom of your ’to do list’. Having a professional to guide you through the minefield of what to wear will help you maximise your impact and help you to enjoy your life! So get in touch! 

Penny x