Dress to impress

Credit: Stuff

Back in November last year I wrote about our Prime Minister, Ms Ardern and suggested that she get herself a stylist. She ignored my good advice, so I’ll try again. Jacinda Ardern, please get yourself a stylist.

Take a look at that photo of Jacinda and Meghan.

Both are wearing coats, but that’s about all they have in common.  Meghan’s coat fits her.  You can see there is a woman underneath that fabric. Both women are wearing footwear. Meghan’s are stylish and feminine. Jacinda’s would be useful if you had a roach problem; and before you climb on high horses about sexism, if John Key had turned up in a baggy ill-fitting suit to meet the representative of our head of state, with the cuffs of his shirt hanging six feet below the sleeve of his jacket, I would have criticised him as well.

The reality is that appearances matter, and here’s why. It shows you pay attention.  When Meghan visited Fiji, she wore a dress the same colour as the Fijian flag. It showed that she had paid attention and not just thrown on any old sack she had in her wardrobe, and she made an instant connection with the crowd that had come to see her.

It shows a measure of respect.  That you can be bothered making the effort to pull a comb through your hair. That your meeting was important enough that you wanted to look your best.

It shows you are competent and capable. Children have to learn how to dress themselves. It teaches them about colours and shapes, and to be self-aware.  If you can’t figure these things out and dress properly, what hope do you have of running the country?

It’s an opportunity to showcase New Zealand talent on the world stage. The minute Kate Windsor is seen in a ready-to-wear outfit, they fly off the shelves. If Jacinda looked good, people would want to wear what she’s wearing.  Imagine the benefits to New Zealand designers if she wore products of local talent, and stepped out looking desirable.

Jacinda and Clarke love to tell us about their Op Shop bargains. What virtue-signalling nonsense. Apart from the purchase price of the garment that goes to the charity, who benefits? No-one. If she promotes a New Zealand designer, they get international recognition, their business grows and they can employ more people. That can only be a win-win, so I’m perplexed that she doesn’t do this. I’m not sure if she’s going for the ‘common people’ look or if she’s trying to show her frugality. Either way, it’s all a bit moot when she is wrecking the economy and causing the most hurt to the people who can least afford it. No point wearing hand-me-downs if you then fling money around the Pacific Islands.

You don’t have to be a fashion guru.  Some people are not that interested in clothes. I get that. Thing is, you can take advice from people who are. I’m sure a stylist is affordable on a Prime Minister’s salary.

It’s good to be comfortable. I get that too. Turn up at my house unexpectedly and you get track pants 3 sizes too big and slippers. Comfies are perfect for around the house. Not in public. Not while you are out representing your country on the world stage, or meeting the representatives of our head of state.

New Zealand has a large pool of designer talent, that is both affordable and world class.  Please don’t make me have to say this over and over again.  Get yourself a stylist. Do your hair. Buy some shoes. Yes, shoes.  Shoes not boots and have a shout out to our Kiwi designers while you’re at it.


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