Dear Annie: Putting your best shoe forward

Dear Annie: I’ve been working as professional for more than 10 years, and I’m arriving at the point in my career where I’m now responsible for spending more time meeting with clients. I’m excited for my continued growth and success, and I’m always seeking ways to grow. I have a handful of mentors who teach me, and I frequently read about management philosophy and practices. I believe that I’m helping myself through these activities.

One of my mentors always encourages me to optimize my confidence. She believes one of the keys to becoming confident is to dress for success. She recommends to never dress casually and always wear clothes that look good and fit perfectly. This will ensure that first impressions of me are always high. Then it’s up to me to be confident in my knowledge and ability to deliver that knowledge.

My question for you is how to find a wardrobe that is powerful yet affordable. My mentor is not on the same budget as am I, and I can’t shop where she does. Are there alternatives for me? — Stylish on a Budget

Dear Stylish: Your mentor sounds like she has a lot good advice on offer. It is important to be dressed appropriately in a professional environment, and you can never go wrong by being overdressed. Thrift stores could be a great option. And going high-tech is an option, too. Technological disruption continues to change our lives, and within fashion that is also true. Several online companies, such as Sumissura, use technology to tailor clothing for your shape. You may choose your fabric, which allows you to work within your budget. If you prefer to be fit in person, there are several reputable tailors from Hong Kong, such as Raja Fashions, that travel to various U.S. cities and fit people in hotel rooms. They will build the suit for you in Hong Kong and send to your home. You may select fabric that works for your budget. Custom-made clothes can make you look good and feel confident while sticking to your budget.

Dear Annie: I travel frequently and am becoming increasingly annoyed by pets in the airport and on planes. I appreciate true service animals for people with disabilities and understand that is necessary. However, I’m talking about the entitled people who decide they need (really, want) their pets to travel with them. On one of my most recent travels, a fully capable lady let her dog poop in the middle of the terminal. She proceeded to say “oh, no!” and then moved on without cleaning up after her animal. Then, on my flight, a passenger had his dog sleeping on his chest. When he was standing to use the restroom, he placed his dog in the aisle, where she promptly peed. He tried not to do anything, except the lady next to him alerted the flight attendants.

I ask you to publish my plea so that others can read this: If you travel with you pet, please have the decency to respect your fellow passengers and at least clean up after them. — Seeking Decorum

Dear Decorum: The skies have gone to the dogs. People who are not in significant need are taking advantage of the service dog loophole to travel with their four-legged friends. I appreciate your concerns about some of these animals misbehaving and the owners lack of sensitivity in managing these issues. Regardless of on the ground or in the skies, we should all respect our neighbors and clean up after our pets. I hope the abuse of privilege doesn’t lead to truly disabled people having a more difficult time traveling with their service animals.


“Ask Me Anything: A Year of Advice From Dear Annie” is out now! Annie Lane’s debut book — featuring favorite columns on love, friendship, family and etiquette — is available as a paperback and e-book. Visit http://www.creatorspublishing.com for more information. Send your questions for Annie Lane to dearannie@creators.com.


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