Your shoes make or break your outfit.
I cannot tell you how many times I have had a friend or client call in a panic over how to complete the outfit she has chosen for a formal affair. Perhaps you have been there yourself: you found the perfect dress and figured the shoes in your closet would be just fine but now you put it all together and it simply doesn’t work.
Subconsciously, we all know that the style, weight, texture and color of the shoe should always compliment the outfit, but we until we see them together, our mind’s eye may think the new dress will work out well with what already have. Yet far too often we are wrong and if we don’t try them on together until the big day, we may very well have a serious Image Issue on our hands.
This is one of the reasons understanding your style and coloring can save you a lot of trouble. If you always follow the guidelines for your Image Identity, you will almost always find that each item you add to your closet works well with the rest of it. This is not reality, however, even for those of us who are pretty strict about staying true to our authentic style.
You could be as careful about your choices in style as an image consultant is, yet still find that a special occasion needs special attention to detail when it comes to finding the right shoe. This makes sense, of course, because if the outfit is not something you wear every day, why should you expect it to work well with the shoes you wear everyday? Here are three important details you should consider when choosing a shoe for a special outfit:
- The formality: a gown deserves a heel. A dressy outfit deserves more than a sneaker. Not much needs to be said here; most people know not to wear their slippers on a date.
- The weight and texture of your shoe should always compliment the fabric in the clothes you are wearing. A heavy jean can carry a heavy leather, but wear a light, lacy dress with a heavy boot and you will make a conflictive statement about who you are–unless, of course, you are an eccentric combination of the casual and delicate beauties.
- The color: always choose a shoe that is darker than your hemline for formal occasions–unless you want all the attention drawn to your foot, which you very well may want to.
Always remember that image guidelines are just that, a guide. Like the yellow lines that guide your driving, there are times when it is perfectly fine to break the rules, but when you do, be sure you are intentionally making that choice in order to make a statement and that you are comfortable with the attention it brings.
Your shoe preference is a big indicator of your Img.ID: C: Quality (The Classic holds onto her shoes for many years.) N: Practical (To the Natural, comfort is far more important than style.) D: Style (The Dramatic likes to stay current with fashion.) I: Femininity (The Ingénue loves dainty shoes.) R: Quantity (The Romantic loves heels but seldom actually wears them.) G: Fun (The Gamine prefers comfort, but should be sure her shoes make a statement.) Click the letter to learn more about that Image Identity, including What2Wear.
In general, it is good to know #What2Wear, not so that we stress out about following rules, but so that we don’t become overwhelmed by all the options available to us. For those times when you find a shoe that you just have to wear–no matter what your guidelines say–consider them your “statement piece.” There’s only so many personalities that are comfortable with making a statement, but if that’s you, make sure you do it with confidence, after all, confidence, not guidelines, is what makes a woman beautiful!
For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. -Ephesians 6:15
As an “Image consultant without the shopping obsession,” I help women and girls overcome confidence conflicts by unveiling the power and purpose of their personal Image Identity (Img.ID) and teach them to accentuate their authentic beauty so they can forget about their appearance and think about others. Please consider me as a speaker for your next event. You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, Goodreads. For ideas of What2Wear, find me on Pinterest where I have a board for each personal Img.ID or consider reading Confident Beauty or Know Who You Are.