I’ve been spending almost all of my days stuck at home because of the pandemic. This means I’ve found solace in my sweats, crew neck sweatshirts, and pajama pants. I no longer have the energy to dress up and style myself because there’s really no place to go. My comfy style would’ve been totally fine if I didn’t have important business meetings to attend via video calls. But, alas, I do.
To get ready for upcoming events, my StyldLife colleague and I decided to make appointments with fashion stylists to find the perfect outfits. I made an appointment with StyldLife stylist: Janelle Black. The event required business casual attire and I was completely lost. It was as if five months of quarantine took all my fashion knowledge away from me. I was frantic and lost on what business casual even meant. Luckily, Janelle was more than patient and enthusiastic to work with me.
I expressed to her my biggest concern is people won’t take me seriously, as I’m fresh out of high school and 18-years-old. Janelle’s goal was to help make me look professional but still youthful.
I showed up to our styling appointment in my signature graphic crew neck and gray biker shorts, which doesn’t really scream “I’m ready to take on the adult world!” Janelle assured me that by the end of our 55-minute appointment, I’ll radiate maturity and confidence.
We centered my look around the only blazer I own. It’s a black blazer with colorful designs splattered all over it. I got the blazer as a birthday present for my 18th birthday from my auntie. It was my first real “professional” piece of clothing that wasn’t borrowed from my mother’s closet, but rather something that was entirely mine. It was my life jacket, essentially. Whenever I had an important meeting or school presentation that called for a more dress-up look, than my usual jeans and t-shirt, I threw this blazer on. I never really knew how to style it.
Janelle advised that I roll up the sleeves of my blazer to show off my spunk, while still looking professional. We were torn between two colored shirts under my blazer: a gray one and a marigold one. The gray shirt gave a more businesslike style, but the red lips that she asked me to pair it with definitely brought out a flirty look. The marigold shirt matched well with the yellow spots on my blazer and brought a fun element to a business look. Although the meeting I was attending only showed me the chest up, she also gave me an idea for my bottoms. A black pencil skirt always does the trick.
I ended up choosing the marigold shirt because I loved the splash of color that it brought to the look. On the screen, it was hard to peel my eyes away from the bright yellow. Yellow is such a happy color and it’s hard to not smile when you see it. I thought it was perfect because it showed that there’s still a hint of sunshine even in the darkest days. I took Janelle’s advice to pair the shirt with a pinkish-nude lip because a red lip would make the outfit look too busy. I think the combination is perfect and closer to my style! I loved the red lip with the gray shirt but the red lip was a little too out of my comfort zone, so I opted out of it.
Janelle helped me style my blazer for other occasions, not just my meeting. I got fashion advice for a night out with the girls, date night, and business professional looks. She helped me find a look that fits me and gives me a boost of confidence. Janelle was able to take one blazer and give me completely different looks! She recommended some pieces that would compliment my blazer, like a pair of daisy dukes for a night out look and cigarette pants for a business look. I always thought that my blazer was just for looking professional. I was 100% wrong!
There was a weight lifted off my shoulders by the end of our video call. I felt like I could sit in front of my camera and show exactly what I was made of. An outfit can change everything and Janelle proved that to me. When we said our final goodbyes, I somehow felt like I was already sitting up straighter, smiling wider, and overall more enthusiastic to take on the world. It shows that I’m able to be a girl boss without having to sacrifice my fun and youthful aura. I looked at my outfit choices and definitely felt empowered.