The suits advisers should wear – Part 2

08 July 2022 Myra Knoesen

“Summer is not a great time for prospecting. Use this downtime to reassess your business suits and it will improve your ability to present yourself to affluent prospects in a fun and stylish way that will set you apart and make you feel more confident. Here are my recommendations for a variety of price points and styles,” says Sara Grillo, a Financial Author, Podcast Host and Keynote Speaker.

“Adviser suit selections should be conservative, but that does not mean they have to be boring. Too few advisers take the opportunity to make a statement about their brand using their fashion,” says Grillo.

“You can set yourself apart using appropriate accessories such as hats, pocket squares, belts and socks. Or, you can mix and match with sportswear. If you wear a pocket square, make sure you match fabrics. Cotton pocket square with a cotton suit, silk pocket square with a wool suit. Your belt should match the color of the shoes,” continues Grillo.

Fit over brand

“It’s challenging to feel confident wearing clothes that don’t fit right. Regardless of your weight, you can look and feel great in a suit. If necessary, look for a suit that is a fuller cut. Most designers don’t gear their suits towards this body type. A classic fit suit will give you a wider armhole, an ampler leg and thigh, and a fuller rise,” says Grillo.

“Made-to-measure suits are more expensive but tend to work out better than buying one off the rack for fuller-bodied people. Before you spend a fortune on the most expensive brand, understand that fit matters more than brand. Enlist the services of a tailor. High-end stores tend to have a tailor onsite as most of the time there is some alteration that needs to be done,” continues Grillo.

Fashion tips for summer

“Even as many offices are business-casual in the summer, you should have at least one summer suit. You’ll never be considered unprofessional showing up to a meeting wearing a suit,” says Grillo.

Some styling guidelines, Grillo says, apply when dressing for the hotter weather:

  • Summer fabrics are cotton, poplin (a blend usually made of cotton and some other fabric; typically has a ribbed texture) or linen.
  • You may be tempted to go sock-less in the summer heat. Don’t do this as it may offend some people. If the heat is bothersome then consider woven shoes as they tend to breathe a little better.
  • Be careful with the sunglasses. Wear them when you need to, but not when speaking directly to someone, as eye contact is where trust is built.
  • Cuffs are the first place a suit shows wear. Send tattered cuffs to the rag pile.

Strategically positioning yourself

“The suits you wear as a financial adviser should strategically accompany the services you offer. The colors you wear are communicators, and the message you send in your wardrobe should be synonymous with the value you bring to your clients. Yes, it is important to wear quality products that have a good fit, but the next level is using the appropriate colors in your suits as a financial adviser,” concludes Ferrera.

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