Must-Haves and Mistakes to Avoid for Women

Lynne Marks, president of London Image Institute, has an international clientele of female corporate executives. This interview was conducted and condensed by Catherine Chapman.

Q. What are some style pieces that a female executive should always have in her wardrobe?

A. A skirted suit for high-level events and some classic jackets in solid colors and tweeds are essential. Smaller checks or patterns that match with well-fitted trousers in fabrics like wool are great to prevent creasing. A pair of pumps and trouser shoes, along with trouser suits, will be a great start to your wardrobe.

Q. Which brands are best suited for contemporary corporate culture?

A. Lafayette 148. Kate Spade. Hugo Boss. Kenneth Cole New York. Elie Tahari. Theory. Trina Turk. Eileen Fisher. St. John. Calvin Klein. Jones of New York. And Vince Camuto for casual business attire.

Q. You have described three levels of executive style for women. Could you explain?

A. Level 1 is for all things formal. A jacket is required with a skirted suit or dress, worn with sheer tights and pumps with covered toes and a thin heel. You should wear darker shades like mid blue, olive, burgundy, gray, with smooth fabrics and accessories.

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Kate Middleton Style

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Level 2 is a less formal style, but still used for those important occasions where you are representing the company. Outfits like a tailored jacket with unmatched trousers, or a sleeved, tailored dress, can be worn alongside patterned blouses, refined knits and tops.

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Level 3 is casual, everyday wear. No tailored jacket is required, but everything should be coordinated with good-quality accessories and fabrics.

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Q. What are the most common fashion mistakes that women executives should avoid?

A. A big mistake is being outdated with hair, makeup, eyebrows and styling. It could also be going an unnatural blonde, or looking too classic with a white shirt and black or navy suit. Opaque black tights with classic suits and wrap dresses are a no, along with frosted eye shadow and hair that is too long and flowing.

Q. How can image consulting make older people look and act younger? Or should that even be a goal?

A. A youthful attitude and appearance can be important for women trying to get a job or promotion. Women date themselves with skirt length, makeup, hairstyle, eyebrow shape and spectacles.

Don’t get stuck in a decade! Eat a healthy diet and stay off fast food to keep yourself at a reasonable weight, no more than 20 percent above your ideal.

Cut out the rambling stories and learn how to breathe from the abdomen. The added energy will make your voice stronger, more youthful and project farther. Improve your posture by keeping your full height with straight knees and thighs for when you stand and walk.


This article was an excerpts from The New York Times, dated 14 November 2013, published by Catherine Chapman , an interview made with the President of London Image Institute, Lynne Henderson Marks.


From the Desk of Top2ToeStyliesta

As the student of Lynne Marks, I was really proud for her being interviewed by The New York Times on this topic. Although this was a basic MUST KNOW and MUST HAVES  for every women , it was clearly defined on the 3 Levels Executive Styles and the criteria of each that you could never missed!

As for the brands in Malaysia, that would best suited for Corporate / Executive Style – caters for Business Formal, Semi Formal and Business Casual – i would personally suggest, the following lists:

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You could add more to your appearance by updating your current style (not being a fashion victim~) on new hair look, spectacles, hijab styling all based on your face shapes , colours based on your skin tone and styling your outfit according to your body shapes . Learn how to loose 5kgs  just by playing with the optical illusion tricks and understanding your personal goal and brand values are the most important steps here as it will reflect the congruency in between your appearance and personal accomplishment.


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