I talk to so many women who don’t like the way they look in clothes so they give up and make do with the sad clothes in their closet. They end up looking old-fashioned or frumpy which does not attract new clients. If this sounds like you, it’s time to release all self-doubts about your age and appearance and make up your own fashion rules that express ALL OF YOU!

Many of today’s business woman over fifty are gutsy, sexy, and personality plus! Their style expression is completely personal and effortless. They’ve given themselves permission to dress their own way, and they’re not a slave to fashion trends (unless they work!).

Ladies, it’s time to GET IT RIGHT! You can’t afford to make the wrong first impression, and you certainly can’t afford to make costly mistakes with your time, energy, or money. Here are four tips to step up your style and stand out!


Tip 1 – Clean out your closet at least once a year and get rid of the following clothes:

  1. Business suits – if your business requires a conservative appearance, break up the suit into separates and add a gorgeous scarf or brooch. For example, pair the blazer with wide-leg or skinny pants in a complementary color. Pair the trousers with a moto jacket or belted cardigan.
  2. Elastic-waisted pants that make even the skinniest women look big.
  3. Long, A-line skirts – if you’re saving them because you think they’ll be back in style some day, forget about it.
  4. Bulky, cable-knit sweaters – these will only add weight to your body and increase your frump-factor faster than anything else. Do not wear sweaters with appliques especially around the holiday!
  5. Frumpy-looking shoes – you know what I’m talking about, the clunky, heavy-heeled shoes that you know are NOT sexy or flattering but they’re really comfy.

Tip 2 – Build your wardrobe around simple, classic styles that flatter your figure, and add interesting and unifying pops of color, texture, and pattern:

  1. In the photo above left, Anna Wintour is keeping her dress and coat silhouette simple and classic, letting the pattern express her story.
  2. Susan Street, photo above right, is wearing three classic pieces with an updated spin. Her accessories pull the outfit together in a sophisticated way.
  3. Look successful. Let’s face it, we’re drawn to people who look successful! Spend money on well-tailored blouses and blazers, luxe fabrics, fabulous colors, trendy accessories, comfortable and fashionable shoes. You’ll get more “cost per wear” from classic pieces.

Tip 3 – Create a business uniform that represents your personal brand:

  1. Creating a business uniform reduces the stress factor of shopping or getting dressed for last-minute client meetings. Build a uniform of core staples in your neutrals with pops of color. Your business uniform should align your inside and outside, feel comfortable, express your personality, and fit your body shape properly.
  2. Have your “wardrobe essentials” on hand, cleaned and pressed. Pieces such as camisoles, dark jeans, blazers, button-down blouses (I love to pop the collar and scrunch the sleeves!), slacks (my current favs are cigarette-length pants), cashmere sweater, dressy boots, dressy coat, and accessories.
  3. Do you know what color palette best represents your personal brand? An easy way to create a uniform is around a color palette because your wardrobe will easily mix-and-match. Buy colors that match your eye color, skin tone, and hair color. If you’ve let your gray shine through, you can wear cool, rich tones in blues, violets, and intense or muted pinks to add personality. If your skin tone is warm, colors like orange-red, plum, bronze and gold add richness to your uniform.

Tip 4 – Know what works with your body shape and what flatters your figure:

  1. First, determine your natural body silhouette created by your shoulders, waist, and hips: hourglass, inverted triangle, triangle, rectangle, or apple shaped.
  2. Know your proportions and dress accordingly using garments to balance and elongate your body. For example, a beautifully pear-shaped woman has a well-defined waist and full hips — I adore this sexy silhouette! Since your lower half is larger than your top half, the key is to wear clothes that create balance and proportion by drawing the eye upward and wearing brighter colors and more embellishments on top. The length of your tops should always hit your hipbone. Accent your small waist with a belt or empire-waist dress. Emphasize your shoulders with a boat neck or cowl collar. De-emphasize your hips with wide or bootleg pants, A-line skirts and dresses that flow gently away from your bottom half. If you can wear heels, the height will elongate your leg line. If heels aren’t an option, wear shoes or boots that match the color of your pants or skirt to create a long, lean look.

I’d love to hear from YOU: Do you have any 2015 style resolutions you’d like to share? What are you going to do next year to Step Up and Stand Out?