Our Fashion Psychologist, Ilysse Moss of Cabi is back with us this month with her insights on dressing, sweaters, and passion to give back to Breast Cancer this month of October.
The fall weather is here and it’s time to reassess our closet. As always, women are conflicted between dressing up and dressing casually. Why is it worth dressing up? Dressing up and receiving compliments support our self-concept. Research suggests that women who feel sad or depressed tend to dress in baggier clothing. Positive or happy women tend to wear dresses, skirts, and accessorize more. Therefore, women with a negative self-concept put less effort into what they wear. It is important to recognize as the weather gets colder and people resort to more inside activities, we may opt for more casual at leisure wear.
Our emotions can affect our choice of dress, but our selection of clothing can also impact our mood. Expressions such as “dress for the job you want, not the job you have” may actually support some truth. Although we tend to match our attire to the setting or occasion which we are in, our clothing influences our behaviors, mood, confidence, attitudes, and temperament. The term “unclothed cognition” suggests that dress has the power to change our mindset because of the ascribed and symbolic meaning attached to clothing. Wearing certain attire may in fact help us to take on a different persona. The concept of “dressing for success” is a real one. Suits and tailored jackets seem more formal and in fact do put us in a business mindset. This frame of mind encourages us to take on more responsibility, perform better, and be taken more seriously. In fact, red symbolizes power. Power dressing is for not just the boardroom, but for anyone who wants to elevate her status, standards, and position. On the other hand, there is a time and a place for casual wear in the office. This may be designated for Fridays when the atmosphere is more mellow. When our dress is more relaxed we tend to socialize more, take on a friendlier manner, and be more creative.
Sweaters are a great component to casual wear. A sweater can be introduced in the work place as a way to replace a suit jacket; this is called soft suiting. Either a sweater coat, long sweater, or mid-waist cardigan are good options for the soft suiting in the office. Sweaters represent warmth, comfort, and coziness. A sweater to an adult is like a swaddle to a baby. We can wrap or drape ourself in an oversized sweater. We can also hide or envelope oneself in a sweater. A sweater provides protection and armor to disappear. In the fall and winter we need more self-soothing options such as hot drinks, sweaters, blankets, and sleep. A sweater can become a woman’s way to hibernate. Often times, in the fall and winter we are less active and may gain weight. A sweater provides coverage to conceal those extra pounds, but still feel good too. Sweaters are forgiving and add necessary coverage to ones body. In addition, on cold days, bright colors can remind us of summer and sunshine. Bright colors also have a significant effect on our feelings. Bright colors are powerful and energizing and tend to brighten our mood.
In October, the color pink is prevalent and symbolic for breast cancer awareness month. Pink, reds, burgandy, and blush are a trend in this 2021 fall/winter fashion. As a matter of fact, cabi, a women’s designer clothing company out of Los Angeles, has a fashion trend called “first blush.” This trend highlights shades of pink. Pink has always been considered a feminine color. Most women know someone who has had breast cancer and feel passionate for recognizing and supporting this cause. In October, as a stylist and fashion psychologist who represents cabi, a company who was started by women for women, I donate a portion of my proceeds from designated cabi fashion experiences to organizations supporting research and treatment for women suffering from this disease. In addition, we must remember that for women, breast cancer may challenge or question ones femininity. The loss of our hair and the need for a mastectomy defines this loss of femininity. I hope you now have a better understanding of how clothing, (sweaters) and hues (pink) function in women’s life. Contact me if you have interest in personal shopping or doing a cabi show to support a charity for breast cancer.