When I’m nervous, or needing a power outfit, I’m always so fascinated by the clothes I choose to wear. Why did I reach for them and what do they do for me?
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to share my blogging story at a local university — in a business class, a university podcast, a student leadership lunch, and a coffee hang with students. Whew. It was a packed day, and I was super nervous. Public speaking makes me a little jumpy.
So what did I reach for?
Right off the bat, I knew I would wear my “power shoes” — AKA these ankle booties. I’ve just always felt casual and confident in ankle booties with this general silhouette. Maybe the small heel gives me a bit of confidence, while the simple silhouette hits a casual note.
Either way, I built my outfit around these shoes.
On top I opted for my high waisted jeans, a grey v-neck tee, and a black cardigan — things that felt soft and comfortable and familiar. Oh yeah, and things that don’t show sweat. Nerves and all. ;)
(You’re looking at a different outfit up there — we didn’t get a chance to photograph the outfit in time for this post, but I’m sure I’ll show it on the blog super soon. In the meantime, check out this outfit from a few days ago — it’s basically what I wore yesterday, but with ankle booties instead of clogs.)
Anyway, despite my nerves, the whole experience was worth it. Sharing something you believe in always is.
So tell me, what do you reach for when you need a power outfit?
• • •
Liked today’s outfit? You can shop it and support Unfancy at the same time by using these affiliate links below:
01 | Silk cami by J.Crew | similar (made responsibly)
02 | Moto jacket (old) | similar
03 | Black jeans (old) | similar (made responsibly)
04 | Bag (old) | similar | similar (made in USA)
05 | Ankle booties gifted by Fortress of Inca (made responsibly) (Fit note: I took my usual size 7 and they fit just right — although if you want to wear them with socks, you might want to size up a half size.) | similar (under $50)
06 | Necklace in Yellow Raw Diamond by Julia Szendrei (handmade in USA)
Laura Blanton says
What an a great/fun opportunity (despite all the nerves!) :) Love this outfit as well as the one you’ve described. This one would be great for a causal date night — you know for when those things *actually* happen. Lol.
Victoria b says
Typically anything in the color red. It’s a power color for a reason. :)
Victoria, I don’t own much red, but I agree. It looks very powerful! :)
I do not have a power look at the moment, but this post has inspired me to find one. When I used to work in a corporate environment my go to power oufit was a bkack or navy suit with light blue shirt or blouse and my favourite heels. Now I am a Mommy and grad student so I need to find a power look that works for my current situation.
I love the cuff on the jeans by the way. Thanks for the great post.
The outfit is really powerful! I prefer to wear in such case skinny leather pants :)
xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena
Rena, those sound fantastic! :)
Will you share what kind of bra you wear with that top…I asked before but never got a response. Thank you
Hey Sarah, I wear a nude strapless bra, I included it in this post: http://bit.ly/2g0qlhE :)
I usually need my power outfit most at work. I have this purple dress that makes me feel IN CHARGE. It fits perfectly, drapes perfectly, and requires nothing else- no necklace, no blazer, no belt, nothing. All alone it is professional and on point. And it’s so comfortable!! I add heels (I’m already 5’9″) and I feel like nothing can stop me :^)
Jealous of Katie’s purple power dress!
Sounds awesome, Katie! :)
Sheila Joy says
A good ankle bootie with a little heel, but still comfortable is definitely a go-to when I’m needing a power outfit!
I agree 100%: footwear! Odd to start at the bottom but people do size you up from the ground upwards, and stylish footwear grounds any outfit. Plus, If my feet are happy and look good I can carry on in comfort and confidence. Good post!
Thick, blunt-cut bangs, makeup, and shoes one notch above those expected for the occasion makes me feel set apart and more confident!
Gen, sounds so fierce! :)
Cool! I would have loved to sit in on any of those! Any chance that podcast is available online?:)
Hey Rylie, it’s not up yet, but I’ll keep you guys posted! :)
Heather | Cedar & Bloom says
I would also love to listen to the podcast!
Hey Heather, ok great! I’ll share the link once it goes live :)
Oh yes, I wold have loved to be in the audience too! Please share if the podcast is available.
Hey Tina, I’ll let you guys know! :)
Thays Dos Santos says
Simple but perfect <3
When I need a confidence boost its always black skinnies + black ankle boots! Something about a heeled boot (but not pumps, etc.) makes me feel very feminine and strong.
this tends to be my go to outfit, and sometimes switch out tank for a tee. ;) ox
All black (either a dress or jeans) with a great jacket + cool shoes (booties or fancy, white sneakers)
Black always makes me feel put together… and adds a misterios vibe.
Tann, yes, there really is something about black. :)
Oddly enough, the outfit you posted is my power outfit. Dressy cami, dark jeans, and an edgy jacket. :)
That’s because great minds think alike, Rochelle! :)
Yes! To shoes first! Helps you feel “grounded & strong”. In my ’30s, I loved my “singing shoes” – solid chunky-heeled black short boots, whenever I had to perform on stage, to counter nerves. My young daughter would laugh, saying “shoes can’t sing!”.
Mine would be a black blazer or sweater jacket over an ivory fine-gauge V-neck sweater, black chinos, black woven leather belt and black ankle boots.
Carol, sounds like a powerful and feel-good outfit at the same time! :)
Susan Haven says
What university did you speak at? My son and his longtime girlfriend go to HSU and I would love it if they could hear you speak.
It’s funny, because my power outfit is basically exactly what you’re wearing in these photos: black skinny jeans, a white shirt, booties and my leather jacket. And my secret weapon is an ear cuff :) It’s what I reach for when I want to look the way I imagine myself — you know, that super cool version of you that exists in your head even when you’re wearing sweats. It’s my “girl power” look.
This is so cool! at first I thought that I can’t relate to this because I don’t have a power outfit. But after I thought about it, I think I do! I have a black dress with black lace all over it. It is so comfortable and makes me feel sexy but classy at the same time. I have worn it everytime I’m going to an event and I feel nervous or uncomfortable about the experience. I wore it in two weddings, in two social events, in a date… I can make it work for daytime events and more sophisticated ones too. Dress it up or down :)
Thank you so much because this post made me realize how powerful that dress is in my life! Oh the little happy things that transform your everyday life :)
Funny how you call these low heels… I’ve got a similar pair that are my “high” heels! :) Except that I think they’re even a little lower than yours…
Liesbeth Verlinden says
Ankle booties for sure! And something structured too: a well-cut dress or a blazer… I used to opt for shirts and statement necklaces and all that stuff traditional fashion blogs would recommend for office appropriate power dressing. But those aren’t really my style, and I realized that in the end those things will only make you feel (and probably look) ill at ease instead of powerful!
Luckily my style ranges from very casual to ‘casual chic’/ classic so now that I have put together a remixable wardrobe with plenty of neutrals, I’m not easily lost for something to wear to any situation.
This outfit is totally my ideal power outfit! Anytime I throw on my leather jacket I immediately feel more edgy and confident. I have been eyeing those booties ever since you first posted about them and think I will finally get them! They’re comfy to walk around in right? Great post Caroline!
Hey Erin! Yes they are comfy. Not too high! :)
Amelia Wasserman says
My power outfit always includes a blazer and a statement necklace. In the spring it always includes a pencil skirt.
My power outfit for work is black pinstripe trousers and a silky blouse, with either a blazer or a cardigan, and black flats. I never wear skirts, dresses or heels to work. Just doesn’t feel practical or comfortable. For non-work occasions, I feel confident in pencil skirts and vintage-inspired heels, usually with a feminine blouse.
Cowboy boots and good hair!
Such a cool and classy style…you looking simply superb and very modern…combination is very attractive..nice collection…speechless….thank you..