Should you dress for yourself or for other people? (finding your authentic style)

August 26, 2016

Written By

Tabitha Dumas
I’ve been pondering the question…should you dress for yourself or for other people?

This ran through my head the other day while searching Pinterest:

Should we dress how we want and in a way that makes us happy…or in a way that’s socially acceptable or helps us fit in?

The way you dress is often dictated by…
  • trying to attract a partner
  • office culture
  • professional standards
  • your desire to represent your business well
  • fitting in
  • impressing or competing with other women
  • camouflaging your “figure flaws”
  • what your kids or spouse think you should wear
  • current trends and styles

Plenty of women simply wear hand-me-downs from loved ones and don’t even think about what they truly enjoy wearing.

I’ve also worked with women who wear their hair long or certain styles and colors because it’s what their husband prefers.

My goal is to help you LOVE your wardrobe and enjoy getting dressed every day.

Sure, you can dress for yourself.

But you also have to dress in a way that honors your lifestyle and your loved ones. None of us live on a deserted island and none of us spend all day “living the dream.” We have to dress for the occasion and in a way that helps us reach our goals. 

So let me ask you a question.

If you weren’t dressing for anyone or anything…you were just dressing in a way that made you feel good and contributed to your well-being…what would you wear?

Let’s use our imagination to answer this question.

Let’s say you took a sabbatical and were able to pursue your passion for an entire summer (painting, writing, napping). You lived in a private getaway in a town where no one knew you. You designed your day and only did what you wanted and saw who you wanted.

Think “Under the Tuscan Sun.”

What would you wear? 

Describe your outfit–how it feels, the colors, the fabrics. What accessories and shoes are you wearing? What’s going on with your hair and makeup? What would you be doing?

I would call that your “authentic style.”

I want to help you bring that authentic style into your day-t0-day or “real life” style.

You need to be comfortable. You need to feel like you’re dressing in a way that expresses your authentic self. You need to wear garments and accessories that tell your story. But you do also need to “fit in.” 

Because people ARE watching the way you dress. It’s why I have a job.

So I challenge you to explore your authentic style and find ways of incorporating it into your everyday look.

Your favorite movie heroine would be a good place to start.

Maybe you like loose, flowy, gypsy-like skirts but you work in an office. Try belting a blouse over it or adding a blazer for structure.

Maybe you love wearing leggings and tunics but they feel too casual for work. Try skinny jeans in a dark wash with a soft tunic in a “pop” color. Same feel–more professional vibe.

Maybe you prefer the ease of a ponytail but fear it’s too sloppy. Add a pretty hair tie or try a chignon or French twist instead.

If you’re not sure of your best colors, by the way, come for a Color Analysis.

I hope you dress for yourself in a way that is comfortable and that helps you elevate your image and expand your influence.

Image matters…but so does being comfortable in your own skin.

1 Comment

  1. nostringscouture

    Tabitha Dumas’ blog on dressing for yourself is a breath of fresh air! The empowering message encourages authenticity in personal style. Her insights inspire confidence, reminding us that fashion is a form of self-expression.


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