How to Master Power Dressing According to a Stylist

Just like how standing with your arms on your waist in a Superman pose for two minutes can boost your confidence, dressing in the right blazers, shirts, and pantsuits—aka power dressing—can do the same. Many S/S 17 designer collections including Prada, Céline, and Louis Vuitton reintroduced us to officewear that is no longer boring and conventional, but modern, bold, and statement-making. We’ll continue to see more power pieces for next season. At Tom Ford’s S/S 18 show, blazers with shoulder pads in hot pink, white, and black were slung coolly over models’ shoulders.

Even if power dressing may seem like a passing trend, it is in fact here to stay and highly political. Power dressing surfaced in the ’70s as a means to let women establish authority in the workplace which was dominated by men. Today, more women are in leading positions, and younger graduates and millennial women are eager to take on similar roles. There’s never been a better time to show your ambition through your clothing. To help you channel your inner power goddess, I asked New York City fashion stylist and producer Jessica Wu on tips to master power dressing and how you can dress the part now before you land your dream job.

PHOTO: Harleen Sidhu

1—Accessories are key

When it comes to power dressing, accessories can make or break an outfit. Wu says casual and dramatic accessories can be paired with power pieces to complete the look: “If I were to wear a pantsuit, I’d wear it with some chunky athletic sneakers or add a flashy or brightly colored bag.”

PHOTO: Harleen Sidhu

2—The blazer is your best friend

Don’t underestimate the power of the blazer. This versatile piece can be styled in a number of ways for a number of occasions and is a great power piece for college students. Wu says a longer blazer can be worn as a mini dress, oversize blazers can be layered with knits and blouses, and more fitted blazers can be dressed up with complementary bottoms or dressed down with boyfriend jeans.

PHOTO: Harleen Sidhu

3—Less is more

A good blazer is important, but what’s underneath can be just as powerful. Modern power dressing has seen a mix of traditional masculine styles and more wispy, baring feminine styles. Under your blazer, Wu suggests to “keep it bare so you don’t look too covered up—wear a silk camisole, crop top, or bralette.”

PHOTO: Harleen Sidhu

How do you style power pieces? Show us on social media! Don’t forget to tag @Cfashionista.

5 Ways to Ensure You Are Work-Ready

Sitting on the couch, flipping through the latest Vogue, and sipping on tea seems most pleasant for a lifetime ahead. But, there comes a point in life when reality sets in stone and things get oh-so-serious. September is a month of reflection and transition. Reflecting on the joys of summertime but pondering in thought about your career. Well, if you’re sitting there twiddling your thumbs and worried about how to tackle this next chapter of your life, here are five of the best ways to ensure you’re work-ready and be more than ready to apply, interview, and succeed with confidence!

PHOTO: Lex Kelly

1—Appearance is everything

An initial impression is everything. The way you present yourself will show a lot to your employer. Be sure you know what the dress code is and whether it’s smart casual or professional attire. A statement piece for every wardrobe is a tuxedo blazer. You can pair this with anything, whether it’s with a pair of jeans and boots or with a pair of tailored slim pants, a classic heel, and a white shirt with a collar.

PHOTO: Kenia Viezcas

2—Have your résumé up to scratch

A professional résumé is essential. This is what you will give the employer when applying for the job, so an engaging summary, proof of expertise, education highlights, and relevant past experience must be listed on your résumé. A cover letter is always a great thing to have as well, so you can target the job and employer in a very specific way, outlining that the job is attractive to you and why. Get creative and stand out. Remember to tailor each cover letter to the specific job you are applying for.

3—Organization is key

The key to staying organized is having a good diary or planner. Whether you’re old school or tech-savvy, this should be your go-to bible. Make checklists, write down what you need to do for the week, and take note of important dates, ideas, and thoughts. This will guarantee that you will not miss or forget a thing.

PHOTO: Valerie Cammack

4—Don’t forget about time management

Plan wisely before any interview. Plan your outfits, your work schedule, your departure times, and your alarms. Having a good grasp of time will help you make conscious choices, enabling you to work smarter even when time is tight and the pressure is high. Have a watch on every day. Not only can you look stylish with a rad watch, but you will never be late.

5—Be prepared for anything

In any interview, questions are going to be posed to you, so you may as well be one step ahead of the team. Research, read, repeat. It’s so important to be confident in your answers, and, above all, be you.

Comment below any helpful ways to get ready for your next career move, whether it be a dream internship or job aspiration. What is an essential way for you to be work-ready?

How to Slay Your Job Interview

College kids are constantly in a financial jam. We are always seeing new clothes we feel we simply can’t live without. We are constantly facing an inner battle within ourselves to decide whether we should spend our money on what we need or give into our temptation and purchase that cute shirt that’s calling our name. If you’re like me, you’ve decided to seek employment. With that said, I am here to give you guys a few tips that will help you slay your interview so that you can start rolling in the dough.

1—Dress for success. Appearance plays a major role. When you step into your interview, you want to make sure that you are looking the part. Your prospective employer should be able to take one look at you and think to themselves that you are a perfect fit. You can never go wrong with a classic all-black look, especially if it includes a blazer. Blazers scream professionalism, and you will turn heads. Also, be sure to add a pop of gold or silver jewelry, some super cute shoes, and you will be good to go.

2—Wear minimal makeup. Now I understand that we live in this era of wearing super heavy makeup with a lot of cheekbone glow, but that is not always best. You want to have on enough makeup to where it will be noticed, but you don’t want your shiny cheeks and dark eye makeup to distract the person interviewing you. Less is more, my friends. Neutral colors with a red lip are perfect. You can still have that wow factor without it being an overkill.

3—Smile, smile, and smile. Now that you’ve mastered the appearance aspect of an interview, your next focus should be your presentation. A friendly smile will carry you a long way. You can win over your employer in the first couple of seconds with your great personality. Just remember to have fun, be yourself, and smile, and you are setting yourself up for perfection.

How do you slay your interview? Show us on social media, and be sure to tag @Cfashionista.


Dressing for Success—The College Perspective

Nearing the end of my college career, I find myself needing to prepare myself for entering my professional career. If you’re like me, you might realize that the first step in doing so starts at home and particularly—in your closet. The first part starts there because you have to start dressing for the position that you want in order to mentally prep yourself for having that job.

1—Dressing the part. There’s a saying that you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover but it is undeniable that when you first meet someone what you are wearing plays a part in the opinion they form about you. When you’re shopping for a new product you are probably going to pick one of the most attractively packaged products that fits your budget. When you are getting ready for your day or an interview, see yourself as a product that a potential employer is shopping for.

You do not have to dress professionally everyday but if you know you will be attending events that will involve networking it is a good idea to dress to impress. If the event is casual, how do you dress for this? Simple, clean lines are always attractive. To accomplish this look you can slick your hair back or put it in a neat bun, wear a casual blouse or shirt, blazer, and black pants or wear a dress. Match the shoe to the lip color or a color in the blouse/dress. Dressing for success doesn’t have to be as boring as it seems either. You should view it as advertising yourself to potential connections and employers; as branding yourself. Adding in a bright color with lipstick, shoe, hat, scarf, tie, ascot, cuff links, a pin, or jewelry can spice up any outfit and show off individuality.

2—A second opinion. The Wall Street Journal even noted that in studies, people that wore professional clothing “may raise one’s confidence level, affect how others perceive the wearer, and in some cases even boost the level of one’s abstract thinking, the type in which leaders and executives engage”. Thus leading me to believe you cannot go wrong with dressing for success.

3—Posture. Looking the part isn’t the only thing that you should be thinking about when dressing for success. Posture and a solid handshake are the next important things in being professional. Not only will slouching create wrinkles in your nicely put together outfit and give you back problems, but it will also make potential employers think you are lazy or sloppy and that is the last impression you want someone to have of you. Handshakes have been a way of formal introduction for decades and is one form of physical contact that you may have with another person. Firm handshakes have been a part of the professional world and it is almost taboo not to have one.

Do you agree that dressing for success is good preparation for a career? Share your thoughts in the comments!

Workplace Fashion for Any 20-Something

If you are in your 20s, you know that adhering to a dress code in the workplace is difficult when you are also trying to stay on trend. It is important to be aware of the dress code of any job, but it is especially imperative for a 20-something who has just entered the first step of their career.

I work in a corporate office of a fashion retail company, therefore trends are important. However, there are some looks that are just simply not office-appropriate. But, have no fear, there are many stylish and trendy outfits that do make the professional cut! Below are my three office-wear staples that have been tried and true for yours truly.

The Outfit Saver: The Blazer

Everyone should own a blazer, period. It is a foolproof staple to any wardrobe! Most options depend on personal preference, as any blazer coincides with a workplace dress code. Try a structured blazer with slight shoulder pads for a more formal look. For a casual look, opt for an oversized boyfriend blazer in a crêpe fabric.

The Perfect Skirt

I am all for wearing pants, trousers, jeans—you name it! But, choosing the right skirt for a professional setting is where most go wrong. The ideal workplace skirt should be a fabric that fits you but is not too tight (you do not want to risk a rip or split!). You may opt for a skirt that falls below the knee; however, if you are looking for a skirt that falls above the knee, always aim for about two to three inches above the knee. (Note: You do not always have to wear a pencil skirt, switch it up and try the one linked above!)

Comfortable Shoes

Shoes can make or break an outfit. When I hear “work shoes,” I think sensible. Your shoes should be as comfortable as possible, especially for an eight hour work day! If you commute and have a long route before arriving at work, wear shoes you can easily walk around in such as sneakers, oxfords, or flats. Bring a pair of shoes of your choice to change into upon arrival. When it comes to heels, they should be no higher than about 3 inches for most occupations, although some jobs are more flexible. I recommend platforms for any job because of the pressure being exhausted on your feet throughout the day. If you are unsure about how to match your shoe to your outfit, grab a neutral or go for a pop of color!

A blazer, the right skirt, and chic shoes are guaranteed to make you shine in any workplace! There is always room to explore no matter what job you have or job you are working towards. Use these three pieces as a guide to creating your very own, unique office style. Although workplaces have dress codes, you are still an individual and can always express that with each outfit you slay!

What are your office wardrobe must-haves? Comment below!

How to Dress Trendy at Your Summer Internship

Summer is an exciting time for college students. Not only is it a nice break from the constant class time and studying, but it is wonderful opportunity to gain career experience through a summer internship. While yoga pants, an oversize crewneck, and a messy bun are acceptable attire for lectures and taking exams, that is not exactly the case when it comes to a real world job. It is extremely important that you are dressed to fit in with your company’s culture. You definitely do not want to be underdressed, but you also do not want to be overdressed. Make sure to ask your boss or other people in your office what the proper attire is.

Some companies will require business professional, while others may be cool with jeans and flip flops. Most establishments usually go with a happy medium, abiding by the business casual look on a daily basis. Luckily for you, there are so many fun and trendy ways to make business casual a lot more fashion-forward than what it gets a rep for.

Let’s take a sundress for instance. You could 100 percent wear this dress to your family’s cookout with sandals, but you could also wear it to the office with a trendy blazer and flats or heels. Never underestimate the power of a blazer.

When I used to think of blouses, my first thought was something along the lines of bland and boring. I learned quickly that this really isn’t the case! So many stores offer professional shirts that are stylish and trendy.

You can also take a plain blouse and dress it up by simply adding a fun statement necklace. I love bold necklaces because you can re-wear them with different tops and have a completely different and unique look every time.

An impressive bag can totally transform an entire look. Treat yourself to a classy, versatile purse to take into the office every day. Personally for myself (a girl who takes many snacks to the office), the bigger the bag, the better!

How do you dress up your office style? Show us on social media! Don’t forget to tag @Cfashionista.

Internship Diary—New York Men’s Day

For the past couple of years, my dream job has been to work for a magazine, specifically a fashion publication like Vogue or Elle. After what seemed like endless applications with no response, I was starting to lose hope for the summer, seeing as that it was already mid-June. Conveniently enough, I happened to get an e-mail and land the summer internship of my dreams working for Kate Moodie, previous fashion and beauty editor of Vogue, Elle, Self, and Women’s Health. In 2014, she decided to start up her own digital lifestyle magazine called Mood of Living, which is focused on conscious living and high-quality lifestyle for men and women.

Unlike any other internship, I was immediately thrown into the culture and world of fashion. I was given the opportunity to attend press showrooms, collection previews, industry events, and New York Men’s Week, specifically New York Men’s Day.

New York Men’s Day

New York Men’s Day was an experience like no other. Upon entering, tons of fashion bloggers walked in and were being photographed by street style Vogue experts. Being a small town girl from New Jersey, I was in complete awe that I was in the presence of so many amazing and established people.

The event itself was split into several rooms—each room representing a different brand and showcasing either a presentation or a runway show. I attended the first half of New York Men’s Day and was able to see Body of Wild, Head of State, Bristol, Kramer & Stoudt, Daniel Hechter, David Hart, and Woodhouse. The images I’ve featured are from the latter four.

Although each room and each brand had a different theme, a common one I noticed was the return of the 1960s, each collection having culture embedded into every piece. Woodhouse had an airy and lighthearted approach by incorporating bright colors and inventive materials such as in the men’s’ rainbow, plastic overcoat. 

Other collections such as Daniel Hechter featured classic blazers and button-downs, highlighting the epitome of preppy boy meets the working man. Bright colors were also incorporated into this collection as well as David Hart’s collection such as reds, blues, and greens. These collections emphasized the ability of the modern man to gain traction in the fashion realm, adding vibrancy and a spin to the classic work attire.

Overall, New York Men’s Day was definitely one for the books. I learned a lot about not only fashion, but about the industry and the blood, sweat, and tears that go into creating a collection. I am beyond blessed to have gotten the opportunity to attend this year’s New York Men’s Fashion Week and I’m so excited to share my experience with all of you!

Do you have any exciting internship stories or experiences? Let me know in the comments below!

Top 5 Interview Tips

You’ve scoured the Internet for potential jobs, perfected your résumé and applied to more positions than you can remember. Finally, you hear back from the first company and they want you to come in for an interview! While this is great news, most likely you will be somewhat nervous and anxious. To combat your interview jitters, I have written down my favorite interview tips. You’ll be sure to nail that interview!

1—Dress to impress. When picking out your outfit, remember to keep it professional and simple. You want the focus to be on you, not your clothing. My go-to outfit consists of a blazer, a skirt or dress pants, high heels, and classic jewelry, such as pearl earrings and a watch. I also like to bring a simple purse and a portfolio to hold my papers.

2—Do your homework. Before the interview, you should review the description of the position you are applying to, in order to make sure you are certain of what the job entails. You can also write down questions you may have regarding your tasks and responsibilities. Additionally, you should become somewhat familiar with the company. Take a few minutes to explore the company website and learn what is important to them.

3—Come prepared. Even though you may have already submitted your résumé online, always bring a few copies just in case. You should also bring a sheet listing your references, and a paper and pen to write down any notes you may want to remember after the interview.

4—Early is always better. Arriving late sets the mood for the entire interview. To be on the safe side, plan to show up about 15-20 minutes early. Be sure to plan the transportation logistics so you are not scrambling the day of the interview.

5—Relax! Drink some water, take a few deep breaths, and relax. You look the part, you’ve done your research, and remember that wanted to talk to you. This is just one interview out of the dozens that you will have in your lifetime. So, before you completely have a panic attack, breathe, and think how lucky they would be to have someone like you working for them. Now go land that job!

What are your tips for nailing an interview? Let me know in the comments below! 

3 Reasons to Buy a Good Blazer

An ideal blazer is a unique thing to come by. Since blazers usually come with a negative connotation of being stuffy and uptight, it is important to know that blazers are anything but that. At the end of the day, a perfect blazer is almost as valuable as the perfect pair of jeans, and possibly even better, because this special piece of clothing is the most versatile thing you will have in your closet. These are the three most important reasons to own this archaic, yet lively, piece of clothing.

1—Blazers are versatile. Whether you pair your blazer with a crisp, white blouse, high-waisted jeans, and slingback flats, or a dress and heels, a blazer will always be the perfect piece of outerwear. Besides being able to wear a blazer with just about anything your heart desires, blazers can also go from day to night. A boxy blazer, blouse, skirt, and platforms can take you from your day at your internship to a night on the town with your best girlfriends. There really is a blazer for every occasion.

2—There are a ton of different stylesJust like jeans, blazers come in a plethora of different styles to fit your mood. For example, there are shorter, fitted blazers, like the ones pictured, and there are also longer, boxy blazers that provide more of a vintage, tomboy look, like this one. Although blazers are generally seen in darker colors such as navy or black, there are so many other colors and prints that blazers come in—very Cher-from-Clueless. You can really get one that fits your style.

3—Blazers are a timeless stapleTrends may fade, but blazers are forever. The proof is in the fact that they are, and have always been, an important staple. They are not just forever because they last a long time. Looks have come and gone, but blazers have always been in our closets and will continue to be there to support our every look. Although different types of blazers have reigned supreme during different times (can you say shoulder pads?), the blazer has always remained relevant.

No matter what your style, who you are inspired by, or where you shop, there is bound to be a blazer that fits your style and personality. You will always be rocking it, no matter where you are going or what you are doing, if you have your trusty blazer along for the ride.

Do you have a blazer that you absolutely love? Tell us in the comments below!

How to Dress to Impress

If you are a frequent reader on College Fashionista, you are probably a college student. As a college student there is one word you will hear more often than any other word. That word is internship. Internships are just the next step after being enrolled in college and is arguably, the most important step. So now that you have built and perfected your resume and have gotten that call back for an interview, how do you impress your interviewer?

Studies have shown it only takes seven seconds for an impression to already be made. In those seven seconds the first thing they will probably notice is your appearance and what you are wearing. Although breaking in the fashion industry is hard and creative jobs such as a graphic designer offer fewer restrictions, it is still important to be professional and wear something that looks thought out and planned. In the look I created, I decided to do a look that is more fun and colorful.

The pants I am wearing are appropriate because they have dress pant pockets. I chose to wear a patterned pair because they excite the look of the pants. Another great option is culottes.

A few other ways to add personality to your outfit is ruffles, bold colors or patterns. Remember to never wear anything too tight or too loose. Flowy blouses are always a classic piece to incorporate but a way to have fun with it is by choosing a button up blouse with a pattern. When finishing the outfit, it may be appropriate to throw on a blazer based on its length, fit and cut. Finally, I ended my look with shoes that are professional but provide comfort for a long day on your feet. Mules, loafers, flats and kitten heels are all great options.

Like I said, you have to not only dress to impress but also dress to prove you are organized and that you planned.

What are your favorite internship style options for a creative setting? Let us know in the comments below!