This story is from an episode of Woman’s Hour presented by Tina Daheley and produced by Dianne McGregor. To listen to more episodes of Woman’s Hour from BBC Radio 4, please click here. Adapted by Sarah Keating.
A school teacher in Devon, England, Lindsey Bauer loves fashion. Whether it’s a bright tropical dress or a sequined shrug, she believes what she wears to work, matters. A lot.
She describes how a student, who was quite often in trouble, once stopped her in the corridor while she was wearing emerald green, glittery shoes.
“Miss, I really love your shoes, where did you get them from?” she asked.
“We just started talking and… every time we passed each other afterwards, I’d always have a chat with her and she’d say, ‘Miss, I’m doing such and such and I’m doing really well in English now’.”
Bauer says standing in front of a class full of 15- and 16-year-olds is an intimidating experience. “You have to build a professional relationship with all of them,” she says, “and one of the quickest ways to make those bonds… is by what you wear.”
“As a woman, don’t let yourself become invisible,” she says. “Do be bold. Do wear colour… just wear something that pushes the boundaries a tiny bit and be emboldened.