What Power-Dressing Means For The Modern Woman

Even if you're not a First Lady.

We've all come across an item of clothing being described as "power": power pantsuit, power jumpsuit, power outfit. But what does "power-dressing" really mean? At WTG, we like to think of it as dressing to embrace your body and personality while paying respect to the place and time. That means taking your closet and turning it up a notch – or toning it down, depending on the adgenda – without compromising your personal style. The difference between a powerful woman and a power-woman all comes down to what's in her closet, regardless of her status. 

In recent years we have seen so many genuinely powerful women winning the world over wih their incredible achievements and distinctive personal styles who embody what power-dressing ought to look. Former First Lady Michelle Obama is a prime example. Not only does she understand how to dress to suit her figure – those bare arms! – she has fun with her clothes, too. People often opt for solid colors at formal functions, but she made floral prints her signature during her time at the White House, and it certainly brightened up the room. 

You don't need us to tell you why everyone adores Kate Middleton's Duchess style: she has redefined royalty for a modern age with her chic blend of high-end high-street pieces, designer dresses and unexpected details. She's not the only European public figure shaking things up, either. French First Lady Brigitte Macron is currently redefining what political partners should wear, by pairing her skinny jeans with contemporary tailored jackets, keeping her hemline high above the knee and rocking bold whites, powder blues and reds – all great diplomatic colors. Her style combines a sense of vitality and importance with a laid-back, French Girl style. 

But it's not just political figures who can make a sartorial statement: we're in a golden age of TV and most of us are loyal to more than one highly addictive series, so where better to look for style cues? Scandal's Olivia Pope knows a thing or two about how to look stylish and serious with her sharp selection of jackets and white pantsuits – no doubt inspired by the President of the Pantsuit herself, Hillary Clinton. Throughout her presidential campaign, Hillary showed us time and again how pertinent our outfits can be by making simple style choices. 

We can't talk about power-dressing without mentioning the most powerful woman in fashion: Dame Anna Wintour. While she's known for her sharp bob and enormous sunglasses, she usually sports a mid-length dress that is both versatile and assertive. The silhouette itself may be fairly conservative, but she plays around with prints, patterns and texture instead.

To summarize, if you want to make an impression at your next meeting or interview, try rocking a sheath dress with a pair of pumps if you're not into the monochrome two-piece look, or go in the complete opposite direction by styling a striking jumpsuit with a cropped jacket. Rememebr you can't go wrong with colorblocking (provided you know which shades suit you best), but you might stand out from the crowd more in a self-assured geometric pattern or contemporary floral motif. 

Check out our favorite fashion moments from some of the most powerful women in the – fictional and real – world, and scroll down to shop our selection of power-outfits:  
Image: Velvetlope.com

Image: Harpersbazaar.com

Image: Vogue.com

Image: Vogue.com

Image: Hollywoodreporter.com

Image: Fashionista.com
Dolce & Gabbana Roseline floral-print crepe midi dress - $2,195
Eloquii Allman Blazer - $125
Topshop Stripe Wide Leg Trousers - $85
Elvi Black Frill Front Blouse - $38
Theory Stretch-wool twill blazer - $395
Topshop ALIBI Multi-Stud Pumps - $60
ASOS Curve Metallic Jacquard Suit In Gold - $48
Anthropologie Velany Bow Dress - $158
ASOS Tailored High Waist Pencil Skirt with Military Button Detail - $64
Eloquii Button Front Fit and Flare Dress - $100
Chalayan Judo Jumpsuit - $1,732
& Other Stories Relaxed Fit Cotton Button-Down - $85
ASOS CURVE Denim Midi Pencil Skirt in Mid Wash Blue - $48
Mango Double-breasted blazer - $80
Boutique Moschino Butterfly Print Dress - $426
Eloqii V neck Sheath Dress - $105