A conversation with Libby Allaway, CEO of Chic Image
Libby Allaway is a corporate dressing stylist, personal shopper, author, designer and TV Presenter.
We sat down with Libby to find out what Libby could teach us about corporate dressing for success.
With over 25 years in the fashion industry, Libby has a passion for helping men and women increase self-esteem and reach their full potential.
Libby is highly is passionate about unlocking potential and confidence through the power of image.
Her company strives to help people to create a positive first impression. She has worked with clients from Westpac, Dress for Success, Commonwealth Bank, A Healthy View, CG Consultants, Vittoria Coffee and Citibank.
Why is it important to dress well at work?
What we wear speaks volumes about how we feel about ourselves and how others perceive us. Wearing the right colours for you and particular situations can alter how people react to you. I encourage my clients to think of themselves as a brand and thier clothes as their way of advertising that brand. Through our image we can portray to others our level of competency, our ability to work in a team, our level of friendliness and our willingness to get the job done.
What do you recommend for dressing corporate while still looking chic?
I always like to add some form of jacket. Gone are the days when we had to wear the formal suit. Thankfully, office attire has relaxed however it’s still very important to keep up your standard as far as your “self brand” is concerned. My other big tip is to have your clothes altered to actually fit your body. There is nothing worse than an ill fitting trouser and nothing better than a garment which has been tailored to fit your body.
What are 5 items that every corporate woman should own?
I usually suggest to my clients to collate a Capsule Wardrobe of 10 pieces which mix and match, however if I were to choose 5 they would be skirt, top, jacket, trousers and dress. Some of my favourite season trends are below.
What investment pieces would you recommend this season?
The best investment pieces you can never go wrong with are a beautifully tailored jacket and an amazing pair of shoes.
Who are some style icons in the corporate world?
Carla Zampatti and Julie Bishop
What are some dressing disasters to avoid?
Not understanding your body shape and selecting the wrong styles for you
Does dressing well need to be an expensive ordeal?
Absolutely not. It’s about knowing which fabrics and styles suit your shape and which ones to look out for when you are shopping in the high street stores. Quality can definitely be found on a budget
What concepts are important to know for dressing well?
Understanding your body shape is crucial. It would be like trying to furnish a room without knowing the dimensions. Also, understanding the correct outfit to suit the situation
Does age impact what we should wear?
To a certain extent. There definitely does come a time when hems need to be worn a little longer, neck lines a little higher however at a younger age it is important to reflect youth whilst still maintaining a corporate look.
Are there ways to look slimmer without all the diet and exercise?
Aha! Yes. That’s one of my favourite topics – Illusion Dressing. Through wearing the right styles for your body shape, wearing the correct foundation pieces and knowing which styles will create the effect of looking slimmer and taller you can create the illusion of months in the gym.
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