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Vintage 70s Tie-waist Jacket

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Depending on what I am wearing, I feel a certain way. There are certain clothes, such is this beauty above, that make me feel like the bees patellas (see what I did there?). It’s a made-in-England vintage piece that I bought in a secondhand shop in Australia in 2013. I’ve worn it extensively in those 7 years so you can imagine how weathered it is by now. It has holes in the elbows that my mum kindly tried to stitch up (apparently I have sharp elbows), the lining needs a second change and the colour a ghost of what it once was. It maybe in a state of disrepair but gosh blimey I feel like a squillion bucks when I wear it. I’m not sure what it is exactly but I feel very proud when I wear it. Even though it is a vintage 70s piece, I love how timeless it is.

Customising to boost confidence

For me customisation is very important. I love putting my ‘stamp’ on anything I can as it makes me feel good. I always change the standard and plain buttons on coats and jackets to put my signature vintage nautical buttons instead. Even after 15 years I’m still doing that. Whatever coat/jacket I’ve worn in that time, no matter how plain will get compliments because of the buttons. Think about changing buttons on your jacket/coat. It requires the most basic sewing skills (I’m terrible but manage).

Confidence is the key to success

It is important to be a-tuned to what clothes make you feel good. When you feel good your confidence will shine through and that is the key to success. Well, one of them anyway. People wonder how to dress well but truly what matters is how confident you are in your clothes. If you are uncomfortable, it shows and that is certainly not success-inducing.

Take Stock

Think about what clothes you wear most frequently. Are there any recurring themes in your wardrobe that you are not aware of? Often we don’t realise what it is right in front of us as we operate on auto-pilot. I denied having a style years ago after a classmate insisted there was a “Melba style”. I don’t know why I found it offensive at the time. Very silly I know. I think it’s because I mainly bought seemingly very random vintage clothes from charity shops and car-boot sales. I didn’t have a compass directing me. It turns out I do have a style. I love old things. They make me feel secure and comfortable. While my vintage jumper collection may seem crazy and ad hoc to me, when i step back I can see I like cosy, good quality warm, long lasting jumpers that mainly have natural colours or muted tones. Although I recently got a 90s bright lemon yellow thin-knit jumper so maybe take that with a pinch of Himalayan pink salt.


Not only can your gut tell you when it’s time to stuff your face with some tasty nourishment, it knows when you’re uncomfortable. Learn to listen. It can be hard to isolate your gut feelings from the general cloudiness of life.


We can generally tell when something is good quality. It’s important to invest in quality instead of quantity. Buying secondhand allows me to focus on quality. This isn’t to say that all expensive clothes are good quality. But good quality is often expensive. If you can afford a decent quality brand new wardrobe then that’s awesome too. Wearing quality clothes will boost your confidence and people will take you more seriously (sad as that may be, it is true). If you want to dress for success it is important to focus on quality. This is not negotiable. I joke, of course it is up to you. The main point is that you wear clothes that make you feel good and confident. That is the key to success.

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